Boebert, GOP lawmakers introduce resolution honoring second-place swimmer in Lia Thomas race
Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) has introduced a bill co-sponsored by 20 of her GOP colleagues that honors Emma Weyant, who finished in second place to Lia Thomas in an NCAA swimming championship last week.
Thomas became the first transgender athlete to win an NCAA Division 1 national championship in any sport earlier this month when she won the 500-yard freestyle race. Weyant, a silver medal recipient at the Tokyo Olympics last year, finished in second place to Thomas.
Thomas’s win has led to a furious pushback from conservatives, who say that transgender women should not be able to compete in NCAA events for women.
“Emma Weyant was the fasted woman competing in the 2022 NCAA Division I Women’s 500-Yard Freestyle, but her first-place win was stolen by a mediocre man who couldn’t cut it in men’s swimming,” Boebert said.
“Emma is a world-class student-athlete whose strong performances in the Summer Olympics and 2022 NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming and Diving Championship speak for themselves. These victories, coupled with her leadership of other women on her team and her dedication to excellence are worthy of Congressional recognition. I will keep working to save women’s sports from woke ideology threatening to strip women of a level playing field,” Boebert said.
Twenty GOP lawmakers have co-sponsored Boebert’s resolution, including Reps. Mary Miller (R-Ill.), Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.), Byron Donalds (R-Fla.), Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.) and Diana Harshbarger (R-Tenn.)
Other Republicans, including some with possible presidential aspirations, have also been weighing in on Thomas.
“By allowing men to compete in women’s sports, the NCAA is destroying opportunities for women, making a mockery of its championships, and perpetuating a fraud,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wrote on Twitter. “In Florida, we reject these lies and recognize Sarasota’s Emma Weyant as the best women’s swimmer in the 500y freestyle.”
In a letter sent last month, LGBTQ organization Athlete Ally urged the NCAA to allow Thomas to compete in swimming meets, gaining more than 300 signatures from former collegiate athletes.
“With this letter, we express our support for Lia Thomas, and all transgender college athletes, who deserve to be able to participate in safe and welcoming athletic environments. We urge you to not allow political pressure to compromise the safety and wellbeing of college athletes everywhere,” the organization said.