Texas lawmakers advance bathroom bill against transgender students

By Doug G. Ware

March 8 (UPI) -- A Senate committee in Texas passed legislation Wednesday to require that transgender students in public schools use restrooms that match their birth sex.

The Senate State Affairs Committee passed Senate Bill 6, the so-called "bathroom bill," by a vote of 7-1 to advance it to the full chamber for a vote.


The bill is effectively a rejection of a directive last year from former President Barack Obama's administration, which ordered U.S. public schools to let transgender students use whichever restroom they are most comfortable with.

Texas was one of several states that filed a counter-suit against the Justice Department directive.

Wednesday's vote followed a 13-hour marathon session of testimony surrounding the bill.

Most conservative Texas senators and one Democrat have pledged to vote for the legislation, which also scraps local anti-discrimination laws aimed at letting transgender residents to use the bathroom of their choice.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who has made the bill one of his top priorities, said the full Senate should vote on SB6 next week.

Obama's directive was never implemented because it was blocked in federal court. Last month, President Donald Trump's administration scrapped federal efforts to get the order implemented.


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