Republican-Led States File Lawsuit Against Biden Administration Over New Title IX Transgender Protections

Republican-Led States File Lawsuit Against Biden Administration Over New Title IX Transgender Protections

Five states led by Republicans have sued the Biden administration over its new rules that protect transgender students under Title IX. Title IX is a federal civil rights law that protects students from sex-based discrimination in publicly funded schools.

A few Republican leaders in other states have said in public that they will not follow the new rules, but they have not yet threatened to sue.

On Monday, Republican Ken Paxton, who is the Attorney General of Texas, sued the Biden administration to stop the rules. The rules will, among other things, stop schools from not letting trans students and teachers use school facilities and names that match their gender identities.

He said that the new rules require “compliance with radical gender ideology.”

In a statement, Paxton said, “Texas will not let Joe Biden rewrite Title IX at will, killing legal protections for women to further his radical obsession with gender ideology.” “This attempt to break federal law is clearly wrong, undemocratic, and not based in reality.” Texas will always be the first to speak out against Biden’s dangerous, extreme policies that put women in danger.

On Monday, the Republican attorneys general of Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, and Idaho each filed their own case, saying that the rule goes beyond what the Education Department is allowed to do, in part because it changes the definition of “sex” to include gender identity.

“This is all for political reasons, and it doesn’t address the serious safety concerns of young women in pre-schools, elementary schools, middle schools, high schools, colleges, and universities across Louisiana and the country,” said Liz Murrill, the attorney general of Louisiana.

A request for feedback from the Education Department was not answered right away.

Florida and Oklahoma’s top leaders said they would not follow the rules.

Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, said in a video on social media that Florida would not allow Joe Biden to change Title IX. “We won’t do what you want, and we’ll fight back.”

At a news conference on Thursday, Oklahoma’s superintendent of public instruction, Ryan Walters, said that the state is “doing everything possible to oppose this illegal and unconstitutional move by the Biden administration.”

Walters said, “We have already told our districts not to follow this illegal rule change from President Biden.” “Boys will not be able to use the girls’ bathrooms.” Boys won’t be able to play games with girls.

More and more states have passed rules that target transgender students. In the past few years, half of states have passed laws that make it illegal for transgender students to play sports on teams that match their gender identity. Ten states have also made it illegal for transgender school staff and students to use bathrooms that match their gender identity in K–12 schools.

The new Title IX rules make official the advice the Education Department gave in 2021 that told schools how to read federal law to protect LGBTQ students from being discriminated against because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The guidance went against a policy used by the Trump administration to roll back Obama-era guidance that told schools to let transgender kids use the school facilities that match their gender identities.

Twenty states led by Republicans sued in September 2021. In July 2022, a federal judge stopped the Education Department from enforcing the guidelines against those states for a short time.

The new guidelines don’t say anything specific about transgender kids playing sports in school, but Paxton and Walters were among the Republicans who talked about it in their statements. As of April 2023, the Education Department proposed a rule that would change Title IX so that transgender students could play on sports teams that match their gender identity. However, the measure would allow some restrictions in higher levels of competition, like high school and college. This rule was supposed to be released by the department in March, but there have been several delays.

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