Two more US states pass bills banning biological boys from girls’ sports — Analysis

Oklahoma and Arizona lawmakers vote to ban transgender students competing with girls

State lawmakers in Arizona and Oklahoma have passed legislation that would ban biological boys from participating in girls’ sports, continuing a push by Republican-controlled legislatures to score points with conservative voters as this year’s midterm congressional election approaches.

Both the Oklahoma and Arizona bills passed Thursday. They will be made law by the governors of the respective states if they are signed. Arizona legislators also passed legislation to ban doctors from performing gender-reassignment surgery on children.

Supporters of the sports legislation said the bills would preserve the integrity of girls’ athletics and prevent biological boys from taking opportunities, including college scholarships, from their female classmates. Opponents have argued that Republicans are discriminating against transgender students by attacking a problem that doesn’t exist.

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Since 2020, more than a dozen Republican-led states have passed legislation prohibiting biological boys from competing in girls’ sports. Two of these states, Idaho, and West Virginia have had to halt the adoption of new laws due to court challenges.

However, it’s not a certainty that the Arizona and Oklahoma bills will become law. Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt and Arizona Governor Doug Ducey have not yet indicated whether they will sign the legislation. Just this week, Republican governors in Indiana and Utah vetoed bills that would limit transgender girls to competing in boys’ sports. In both states, lawmakers have indicated they are going to try and override the governors’ vetoes.

“We strongly urge Governor Ducey to follow the leadership of Governor [Spencer]Cox is in Utah, Governor [Eric] Holcomb in Indiana and veto these discriminatory bills,”Human Rights Campaign is an LGBTQ group that spoke out on Thursday. According to the group, lawmakers across the nation who passed legislation have been informed. “anti-transgender”The bills failed “provide examples of what exactly they were legislating against.”

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is one of the advocates for such legislation. He has pointed to cases like those where transgender high school girls won Connecticut’s high-school sprinting championships. These girls led to lawsuits filed by their families claiming they were denied track awards and scholarships.

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Oklahoma Senator Michael Bergstrom was part of the Republican lawmakers that pointed out Lia Thomas (the transgender female who won an NCAA swimming title last week). “Women are women, and they have the right to compete against other women and have the same opportunities as men to advance in the athletic endeavors that they are good at,”Julie Daniels, a senator from Oklahoma.

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