Kansas Governor Laura Kelly (D-Kan.) vetoed a bill on Thursday that would have protected women’s sports from so-called “transgender” athletes pretending to be women and competing against real women, as reported by The Hill.
In her statement following the veto, Kelly claimed that the bill “sends a devastating message that Kansas is not welcoming to all children and their families, including those who are transgender.” She then claimed, without evidence, that such students – who often engage in women’s sports and subsequently unfairly dominate against the real, biological women – are “at a higher risk of bullying [and] discrimination.”
The bill, titled “The Fairness in Women’s Sports Act,” was championed by Republicans and would have implemented a requirement where “intercollegiate, intramural, or club athletic teams or sports that are sponsored by public educational institutions [are] to be designated based on biological sex.”
Despite the overwhelming evidence that “transgender” athletes abuse the system and tip the scales in their favor at a great disadvantage to actual women, Kelly claimed that the bill was simply targeting people “who may be different than us,” falsely framing it as a civil rights issue.
Multiple bills to protect women’s sports have been proposed in mostly Republican-led states. Although they have been passed in some states such as Mississippi and Tennessee, some Republican governors have vetoed them. Among these are South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem (R-S.D.) and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum (R-N.D.). Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson (R-Ark.) had previously signed a similar bill to protect women’s sports back in March, but then controversially vetoed a bill that would ban gender-altering surgeries for teenagers in the state; his veto was soon overturned by the state legislature, successfully passing the bill into law.