Democratic California Sen. Kamala Harris co-sponsored a bill that would force public schools to allow biologically male athletes who identify as transgender to compete in girls’ sports.
Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden announced Harris as his running mate on Tuesday.
In March 2019, Harris co-sponsored the Equality Act, which would amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to make “sexual orientation and gender identity” protected characteristics under federal anti-discrimination law.
The bill passed the House with unanimous Democratic support in May 2019 but never came up for a floor vote in the Republican-controlled Senate.
Biden has pledged to get the Equality Act signed into law within his first 100 days in office, making the Democratic ticket united on the issue of forcing schools to allow some biologically male athletes into female athletics.
President Donald Trump’s Department of Education sided with high school girls suing the state of Connecticut over its transgender policy, and his Department of Justice threw its support behind an Idaho law restricting girls’ sports to biological females.
Biologically male athletes who identify as transgender have racked up accomplishments in female athletics.
Franklin Pierce University runner CeCe Telfer, for example, won an NCAA Division II women’s track championship in May 2019. Telfer is a biological male who identifies as transgender and previously competed on the university’s women’s team.
University of Montana runner June Eastwood, a biologically male athlete who identifies as a transgender woman, was named the Big Sky Conference’s female athlete of the week in October 2019. Like Telfer, Eastwood competed on the men’s team at the university before switching to the women’s team.
Less than a third of Americans believe biological males who identify as transgender should be allowed to compete in girls’ sports, a November 2019 poll showed.
Biden’s campaign did not return an email seeking comment for this story.
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