Congress considers future of the military draft, while Supreme Court holds off
Posted Jun 14, 2021
NOTE: This article was co-authored by Max Margulies, Director of Research, Assistant Professor of International Affairs at the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, and Amy Rutenberg, Associate Professor of History at Iowa State University.
The Supreme Court has declined to hear arguments in the case of National Coalition for Men v. Selective Service System. In doing so, it acceded to the Biden administration’s wishes that it not address the question of whether women should join the millions of young men required to register each year with the Selective Service – the federal agency responsible for the draft. It will now be up to Congress to decide what, if anything, to do with the law governing registration and the draft.
As scholars of the draft, Director of Research and assistant professor of international affairs with the United States Military Academy – West Point Max Margulies, and Iowa State University associate professor of history Amy Rutenberg have seen Congress grappling with the question of selective service for years. A bill to include women in the draft was introduced in 2020 after a national commission studied the issue for four years. Congress is also considering two other proposals to dismantle the entire Selective Service System.
The future of the draft, and registration for it, depends on two questions. One is about the role of women, but the bigger one is about the role of the registration itself.
Read Margulies’ and Rutenberg’s full article in The Conversation here.