White House says Biden would veto House Republicans' proposed anti-trans legislation
A bill proposed by Rep. Greg Steube that would ban some trans youth from playing sports is being considered in the House, although it is unlikely to be considered in the Democratic-controlled Senate.
President Joe Biden pledged to veto a Republican-sponsored House bill that would ban trans girls and women from participating in school sports consistent with their gender identity, the White House announced April 17.
The bill, H.R. 734, is set to be considered on the floor of the House of Representatives April 19. Introduced as the Protection of Women and Girls in Sports Act by Rep. Gregory Steube (R-FL), the bill would mandate that “sex in the athletic context must be recognized based only on a person’s reproductive biology and genetics at birth.” It would also make it a violation of Title IX for a recipient of federal funding to run athletic programs in which someone who was assigned male at birth participated in women’s or girls’ sports, according to a summary published by the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, known as the Committee on Education and Labor under House Democratic majorities.
The bill stands little chance of passing through Congress; even if it is passed by the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, it may not be considered in the Senate due to the Democrats’ slim majority in that chamber.
“For students nationwide, participating in sports and being part of a team is an important part of growing up, staying engaged in school, and learning leadership and life skills,” the Executive Office of the President said in a Statement of Administration Policy. “H.R. 734 would deny access to sports for many families by establishing an absolute ban on transgender students—even those as young as elementary schoolers—playing on a team consistent with their gender identity.”
The statement called the bill a “one-size-fits-all-requirement that forces coaches to remove kids from their teams,” adding:
At a time when transgender youth already face a nationwide mental health crisis, with half of transgender youth in a recent survey saying they have seriously considered suicide, a national law that further stigmatizes these children is completely unnecessary, hurts families and students, and would only put students at greater risk. Discrimination has no place in our nation’s schools or on our playing fields.
Instead of addressing the pressing issues that families and students face today—such as raising teacher pay, keeping guns out of schools, addressing the mental health crisis our youth face, and helping students learn and recover academically from unprecedented disruptions—Congressional Republicans have instead chosen to prioritize policies that discriminate against children. If the President were presented with H.R. 734, he would veto it.
The White House’s opposition to the bill comes after the Department of Education announced a proposed change to regulations under Title IX that would prohibit categorical bans of trans student-athletes from playing on sports teams that align with their gender identity, but allow consideration of some forms of restrictions.
“For older students, especially at the high school and college level, the Department expects that sex-related criteria that limit participation of some transgender students may be permitted, in some cases, when they enable the school to achieve an important educational objective, such as fairness in competition, and meet the proposed regulation’s other requirements,” the Education Department’s fact sheet reads.
The House Rules Committee conducted a hearing on H.R. 734 the same day the White House released its statement and a month and a half after it passed out of the Education and Workforce Committee. The Rules Committee voted to allow the bill to proceed to debate on the floor.
Calling H.R. 734 a “trans-bullying bill,” the committee’s ranking member, Democratic Rep. Jim McGovern, said during the hearing on April 17: “More division, more extremism, more MAGA culture wars. You know, when I was home in Massachusetts, this issue didn’t come up at all. Not a single person brought this issue up to me. Republicans are obsessed with attacking and bullying trans people. It’s cruel. Frankly, it’s creepy. And it’s a really rotten thing to do.”
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.
216 Republicans vote to undo student loan relief for 43 million Americans
The House has passed a resolution that would cancel President Joe Biden's student debt relief plan.By Emily Singer - May 25, 2023
$42 billion in loans to teachers, nurses, service members forgiven under Biden
Some 615,000 public servants have benefitted from the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.By Oliver Willis - May 08, 2023
Republicans are trying to legislate diversity and equity out of higher education
With the guidance of conservative think tanks and prominent Republicans, over 30 bills have been proposed in state legislatures across the country targeting gender, race and sexuality studies.By Associated Press - April 18, 2023