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Senate Votes for Women to Register for Military Draft

Senate Votes for Women to Register for Military Draft

Historically only American men have been drafted into combat.

But for the first time in history, the Senate voted on Tuesday in support of a defense bill that would require women to register for a potential military draft.

The vote was 85-13 in favor of the National Defense Authorization Act which would allocate $600 billion in defense spending. According to a report from the Associated Press, the bill also includes controversial provisions like prohibiting the closure of Guantanamo Bay in Cuba and rejecting the Pentagon’s efforts to close military bases.

In April, Rep. Jackie Speier said she supported the new policy to include women in the draft.

"I actually think if we want equality in this country, if we want women to be treated precisely like men are treated and that they should not be discriminated against, we should be willing to support a universal conscription," she said.

America has not had a military draft since 1973 during the Vietnam War era

Despite the fact that the U.S. does not hold mandatory conscription and relies on an all-volunteer force, now all women may need to register with the Selective Service Systems within 30 days of turning 18.

But the House and Senate must first compare and resolve the differences in their versions of the bill. The House's version of the bill does not include the requirement for women to enter the military draft.

NEXT: The Navy Just Gave Women Iconic Sailor Hats for the First Time »

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Photo Credit: Jessica McGowan/Getty Images