New Hampshire’s HB 1251 — a controversial bill that would have outlawed transgender girls or women from competing on school sports teams matching their gender identity — died in the State House Education committee Wednesday, reported the Union Leader.
By a vote of 13-6, the panel recommended killing the measure, which would prohibit trans female athletes from competing in primary, secondary or college sports teams for women. Trans men could still try out and compete on any boys’ team.
House Education Committee Chairman Mel Myler, a Democrat from Contoocook, N.H., said he seldom spoke about bills prior to a vote by his committee.
But according to the Union Leader, Myler said last month’s testimony of 15-year-old Lane Joslin, a trans girl, moved him to stop the bill.
“We have not heard of any problems with transgender students playing sports in this state,” Myler said, noting Joslin spoke of her passion for playing soccer on her girl’s prep school team. “She should not be denied the right to participate in a sport that she loves.”
“This really is a wolf in sheep’s clothing,” said State Rep. Stephen Woodcock, according to the newspaper. “This is not about transgender youngsters playing on another gender team. This is about not allowing transgender youth to participate.”
However, HB 1251 may not remain dead. The Union Leader reported the full House of Representatives will take up the bill again next month.
“This is not a discriminatory bill at all,” Republican State Rep. Glenn Cordelli said. “This is a bill that protects Title IX.”
Meanwhile, Idaho lawmakers shelved one anti-transgender measure that would imprison doctors for life for treating trans kids, but moved forward on another, according to the Idaho Statesman.
Republican State Rep. Greg Chaney was one of three GOP lawmakers who joined all 14 House Democrats in voting against HB 500, a bill banning trans female student athletes from participating in sports that match their gender identity. It would The measure, dubbed “the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act,” passed 52-17 and now is in the hands of Idaho’s state senators.
The bill is co-sponsored by Republican State Sen. Mary Souza and Rep. Barbara Ehardt.
“This is about preserving opportunities for girls and women,” Ehardt said Tuesday during debate on the bill, according to the Statesman.
“Letting boys and men compete against girls and women” would “shatters our dreams,” Ehardt said, misgendering trans girls in the process.
Although that effort was lost, Cordelli, the House Judiciary, Rules and Administration Committee chairman, announced Wednesday another anti-trans bill will be held in committee. HB 465 would ban therapy and medical treatment for transgender children, and put doctors who broke the law behind bars for life.
So many people came to testify against the bill, Idaho’s statehouse had to open three overflow rooms, according to trans athlete Chris Mosier and the ACLU.
In a press release Wednesday, Cordelli said that Tuesday’s testimony “showed the very real struggle faced by those with gender dysphoria, their families and their providers. While I strongly disagree with their conclusions and course of conduct, the parents and providers of those with gender dysphoria are very intently attempting to do what is best as they see it.”
However, lawmakers on two committees in Alabama sent similar bills to block medical treatment for trans children to the full State House and the State Senate for consideration.
Arizona legislators are considering a bill, HB 2706, that would not only ban trans girls from playing in school sports teams that align with their gender identity, the ACLU’s Chase Strangio tweeted that it would empower schools to genetically test students to “prove their sex,” and even force them to undergo internal genital examinations of their reproductive organs.
Earlier this month, lawmakers in South Dakota and Florida effectively killed bills that would make medical transition for children illegal. Proposed anti-trans bills are still in the works in Illinois, Oklahoma, Colorado, South Carolina, and Kentucky, reports Katelyn Burns in Vox.
Another bill targeting trans student athletes is also being considered in Missouri, home of out former NFL player Michael Sam, who tweeted his support for trans athletes.