If confirmed, Green would oversee some
of the estimated thousands of transgender active duty service members. In 2016, the Department of Defense ended its ban on transgender people serving openly in the US military.
Green, currently a state senator in Tennessee, is already facing fierce opposition from LGBT activists and Democrats for his past comments about transgender people. In 2016, Green told a Tea Party group, "if you poll the psychiatrists, they're going to tell you that transgender is a disease."
On Facebook in 2013, Green shared a blog post from Fox News contributor Todd Starnes on the Obama administration's opposition to a religious freedom amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act. Critics of the amendment argued it would open the door to harassment based on religious grounds, while proponents of the bill said it would protect the rights of military members to practice their religious faith.
"Mr. Obama supports transvestites in uniform but you can not have a bible on your desk, saying it disrupts good order in the military," Green said in his Facebook post. "Next thing you know we will be sending hundreds of millions to our enemy. Oh wait we've already done that. This guy's attack on the military and the values which create and sustain its success is unsurpassed in the annals of history and reason."
The National Center for Transgender Equality defines
'transvestite' as an older term for 'cross-dresser' that many in the US consider derogatory.
Green later commented on his original post that the "social agenda items" of President Obama led to disorder in the military.
"I agree that freedom of religion means a person has a right, to worship however and whomever," wrote Green. "I'm cool with a coworker having a Koran on his desk. But to suggest that a Bible or Koran would lead to disorder in the military more so than many of the other social agenda items of this president is wrong."
Darren Morris, a political adviser to Green, told CNN's KFile: "Dr. Green reposted an article regarding President Obama's assault on religious freedom in the military. The article stated the Obama Administration 'strongly objected' to a measure that would protect the religious rights of soldiers. Dr. Green believes in protecting all rights of all soldiers regardless of their political beliefs, ethnic background, religious beliefs or sexual orientation. He has consisted stated this throughout his military career."
CNN reported on Tuesday that Green's nomination is in jeopardy and that the nominee might withdraw. Morris called talk of Green withdrawing "completely, absolutely untrue."
Green has also spoken out against allowing transgender people to use the bathroom of their choice.
In remarks on his Facebook in June 2016, Green wrote in reference to the Syrian refugee crisis: "What we really need is a president who will attack the enemy and create safe havens for these people in their own country But he's too busy trying to put men in women's bathrooms."
In that same post, Green referred to the former president as "B. Hussein Obama."
"Despite known ISIS terrorists infiltrating the West as Syrian refugees, B. Hussein Obama insists on pushing them into our communities," he said above photos of a Wall Street Journal article about Syrians being arrested in Germany as terror suspects.
After a commenter questioned Green's use of Obama's middle name, Green suggested that he'd used it to draw a parallel to former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.
"Hussein as in Saddam Hussein was a totalitarian dictator," Green said. "Since Mr. Obama seems to think he can, without the consent of the legislature, release edicts in the form of executive orders, deemed significantly different in scope than previous presidents, he violates the clear separation of power in the constitution."
Morris, Green's adviser, said that Green was just pointing out his disagreement with Obama on Syrian refugees.
"Dr. Green was merely pointing out, via hyperbole, his strong disagreement with President Obama over the Syrian refugee issue and his disagreement with the lack of respect President Obama had for the states, such as Tennessee, to protect its citizens from problems created by the issue," Morris said.