'A Great Day for America': House Passes Bill Barring Trans Athletes from Girls Sports
Transgender athletes whose biological sex is male would be barred from competing on girls or women’s sports teams at federally supported schools and colleges under legislation pushed through Thursday by House Republicans checking off another high-profile item on their social agenda.
The bill approved by a 219-203 party-line vote is unlikely to advance further because the Democratic-led Senate will not support it and the White House said President Joe Biden would veto it.
Supporters said the legislation, which would put violators at risk of losing taxpayer dollars, is necessary to ensure competitive fairness.
They framed the vote as supporting female athletes disadvantaged by having to compete against those who claim to be another gender than they actually are.
The House action comes as at least 20 states have imposed similar limits on trans athletes at the K-12 or collegiate level.
The bill would amend landmark civil rights legislation, known as Title IX, passed more than 50 years ago.
It would prohibit recipients of federal money from permitting men and boys from participating in programs designated for women or girls.
The bill defines sex as “based solely on a person’s reproductive biology and genetics at birth.”
The sponsor, Rep. Greg Steube, R-Fla., highlighted the case of Emma Weyant, a resident of his district and a 2020 member of the U.S. Olympic swimming team who finished second in the NCAA women’s 500-yeard freestyle championship last year.
She was defeated by Lia Thomas, a man who competed for three years on the University of Pennsylvania men’s swimming team before joining the women’s team.
“The integrity of women’s sports must be protected,” Steube said.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said it was a “great day for America, a great day for girls and women and for fairness in sports.”
The Biden administration has issued a proposed rule that would prevent any school or college that receives federal money from imposing a “one-size-fits-all” policy that categorically bans trans students from playing on sports teams consistent with their gender identity.
Such policies would be considered in violation of Title IX.
Any limits would have to consider the sport, the level of competition and the age of students. Elementary school students would generally be allowed to participate on any teams consistent with their gender identity, for example; more competitive teams at high schools and colleges could add limits, but those would be discouraged in teams that don’t have tryouts or cuts.
“We don’t want biological men taking away the achievements of women who fought so hard to get where they are today,” said Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., the first woman to graduate from The Citadel military college.
It was the latest proposal by newly empowered Republicans to win over parents concerned about what their children are experiencing in school.
But Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Iowa, assessing Thursday’s action, said, “Make no mistake, this is not a culture war.”
She spoke of those who “are trying to diminish and erase who we are as women and I will not stand for it.”
Last month, the House passed a measure that would require schools to publish course studies and a list of books kept in libraries, as well as affirm parents’ ability to meet with educators, speak at school board meetings and examine school budgets.
That legislation is also not expected to advance, though it gives House supporters the chance to promote their vote for it during next year’s election.
The Western Journal has reviewed this Associated Press story and may have altered it prior to publication to ensure that it meets our editorial standards.
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