Thirteen-State Coalition Steps Up The Legal Fight Against Obama’s Transgender Bathroom Policy
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is leading a lawsuit involving 13 U.S. states against Barack Obama's transgender bathroom policy. The coalition has asked a federal court in Texas this week to stop the policy's enforcement while the lawsuit is ongoing.
Coalition Bent On Fighting Obama Directive
Paxton asked the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas for an injunction on the Department of Justice, Department of Education, and other federal agencies, Reuters reported. The injunction will prevent the governing bodies from allowing transgender people to use bathrooms, locker rooms, and changing areas that correspond with the gender they identify with.
Paxton said schools could lose funding "for simply exercising the authority to implement the policies that best protect their students," according to his statement quoted by Reuters. The Attorney General said the Obama administration is equating the term "sex" with "gender identity" in federal laws even though they're not the same.
Equating these terms could spur a movement that will force schools and businesses in the United States to allow people to use gender-specific facilities that don't correspond with their gender at birth. Other states involved in the lawsuit are Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah, West Virginia, and Wisconsin, Breitbart listed.
Last week, Paxton issued a non-binding opinion stating that the new transgender policy violates state law. This is because the policy puts "parents to a subordinate status" in their children's lives, according to Dallas Morning News.
The Justice Department plans to resolve the injunction motion before the 2016-17 school year begins. The Justice Department is required to respond to the injunction request by July 27.
President Obama has come under fire after the transgender bathroom directive was issued on May 13. In his defense, Obama said that transgender children in schools are facing discrimination and bullying and accommodating these kids -even through something as simple as bathrooms and changing rooms can greatly help their situation, Fox News reported.
The president's transgender bathroom policy relies on Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits sex-based discrimination in education programs and activities. Schools that don't follow Obama's directive will face federal funding cuts.
Texas Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, meanwhile, said at a recent press conference that he will support schools that refuse to comply with the transgender bathroom policy. Echoing his fellow Republicans' views about the matter, Patrick said allowing transgender people to use bathrooms that correspond with their gender identity would put other students' privacy and safety at risk.