National Guard rejects Hagel directive on same-sex ID cards for military

The Mississippi National Guard won’t comply with U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel’s directive that states provide ID cards to allow same-sex spouses of military members to claim benefits.

In a speech last week, Hagel criticized Mississippi and eight other states that are defying Pentagon policy. He called the resistance unfair and said it places a hardship on same-sex couples who have to travel to federal installations to receive the ID cards.

“We must continue to abide by the state constitution, and we will continue to refer applicants to active duty installations in Mississippi,” Mississippi National Guard spokesman Tim Powell said.

Mississippi and the other states won’t provide the ID cards but will refer same-sex couples to federal installations to receive the identification.

Clarion Ledger