State Watch

Kansas GOP fails to override governor veto of transgender sports ban

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Republican lawmakers in Kansas on Monday failed to override Gov. Laura Kelly’s (D) veto of a proposed transgender sports ban, according to The Associated Press.

Kelly vetoed the bill that passed both state houses in April. The proposal would ban transgender people from competing in women’s and girls’ sports in the state.

The state Senate’s vote to override the veto came up one vote short of the 27 needed. 

In a press release, Kelly called the bill a “devastating message that Kansas is not welcoming to all children and their families, including those who are transgender — who are already at a higher risk of bullying, discrimination, and suicide.”

Supporters of the proposal argued that they were trying to protect fair competition in women’s and girls’ sports and preserve opportunities for female athletes, such as college scholarships, according to the AP. 

The veto comes as a number of other GOP-led states have passed or are considering legislation to ban transgender people from competing in women’s and girls’ sports.

Idaho, Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee and West Virginia have all enacted laws, according to the AP, and Florida has passed a bill that could soon go to Gov. Ron DeSantis’s (R) desk. In South Dakota, Gov. Kristi Noem (R) issued an executive order banning transgender athletes.

Kansas state Sen. David Haley (D) was the last to cast a “no” vote on overriding the veto, meaning the law would not be enacted.

Tags anti-transgender legislation Athletics girls sports Kansas Kristi Noem Laura Kelly LGBTQ Ron DeSantis Transgender ban womens sports

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