Can Women Be Drafted?

Not yet. But they could soon be required to sign up for selective military service like guys. Then again, selective service may disappear altogether.


United Press International reports on a Congressional divide over what to do about the Selective Service System that requires male adults ages 18-25 to register to be drafted for military service in the case of an emergency.

Although that hasn’t been necessary in 40 years, the recent change which allows women to serve in front-line combat roles has reinvigorated the discussion.

In the House of Representatives, Democrat Peter DeFazio and Republican Mike Coffman are pushing to abolish Selective Service, which they argue is a waste of money. Maintaining a database of those who are registered costs $24 million a year, and it’s likely that cost would rise if women were included for the first time. The director of the Selective Service agency says that’s “inexpensive insurance.”

Others in the Senate, such as Democrat Carl Levin, support expanding the program to include women. The article says that military agencies must provide potential implementation plans by May, so we’ll likely hear more on the subject then.

Stacy Johnson

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