Saturday, June 10, 2023

Kansas governor nixes bill on role of trans athletes, parents

Topeka, Cannes. ( Associated Press) — Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly on Friday backed a GOP proposal aimed at banning transgender athletes in girls’ and women’s sports and trying to make it easier for parents to remove content from public school classrooms. Vetoed. and library.

Kelly also vetoed a measure that would tighten state rules for non-disabled adults without children receiving food aid and protect health care providers from lawsuits they receive during the coronavirus pandemic. .

None of the four measures approved the Republican-controlled legislature with a two-thirds majority in both the House and Senate required to override the veto. Kansas lawmakers are on their annual spring break but are scheduled to reconvene on April 25 to end business for the year.

While conservatives have not yet been able to enforce resolutions on Kelly’s veto, measures on transgender athletes And the education bill that Republicans call a proposed “parental rights bill” is likely to be the issue in Kelly’s tough race for re-election this year.

Both issues turn big for Republicans across America ahead of this year’s midterm election. In his veto messages to lawmakers, Kelly suggested that politics caught his attention, but Senate Speaker Ty Masterson, an Andover Republican, responded by saying that the governor’s actions showed that he was “largely controlled by the Left.” is.”

Kelly’s alleged Republican rival, Attorney General Derek Schmidt, has said he will sign off on transgender athletes’ measure. She called the measure “divisive” and said it would hurt the state’s ability to attract businesses.

“It’s harmful to students and their families, and it’s bad for business,” Kelly said in a statement.

Fifteen states this week enacted laws on transgender athletes, including Kentucky. Kelly vetoed Similar measure last year.

Proponents of such restrictions argue that they are trying to preserve scholarship opportunities for girls and young women. They repeatedly refer to transgender women and girls as “biological” men, men or boys.

“It’s about protecting the woman who has worked and trained her entire life and that her hard work should not be forced to compete on useless playgrounds,” Masterson said.

In addition to attacking the proposed sanctions as anti-LGBTQ discrimination, critics across America have noted that there are relatively few transgender athletes. In Kansas, the state association that oversees extra-curricular activities for grades 7 to 12 says it has been notified of only six or seven transgender athletes in those grades. Some lawmakers say there is only one transgender girl, but the association could not confirm this.

The measure will also apply to colleges and clubs and intramural sports.

Republicans across America have also viewed parental control in public schools as a powerful issue since Republican Glenn Youngkin won the Virginia governor’s race. After increasing it last year.

Some Kansas conservatives wanted to ban teaching concepts from critical race theory, A scholarly movement focused on the legacy of slavery, racism, and discrimination in investigation of American history and modern society. But they settled on what they call “transparency”. As a better response.

bill The vetoed by Kelly would require local school boards to develop policies to allow parents to review classroom and library materials and handle demands for their removal.

“By choosing privacy over transparency, the governor is indicating that he believes parents are the enemy and that schools have a right to hide what they are teaching our children,” Masterson said.

But critics say schools are not hiding what they teach and that teachers regularly provide lesson plans to parents. He suggested that this measure would create cumbersome rules that come in the way of teaching.

Kelly said parents have a “great impact” on children’s education, but added that the measure would “create more division in our schools and be costly.”

“The money that should be spent in the classroom will end up being spent in the courtroom,” she said.

The food aid handling measure would require non-disabled adults without children to enroll in on-the-job training to receive assistance if they are not working 30 hours a week. Republicans argue that it will move those receiving aid into the workforce and make them self-reliant.

Andover Republican Senate President Ty Masterson suggested Kelly’s action shows why employers’ struggle to fill jobs has become a “crisis.”

Critics noted that some poor adults who are working part-time would be forced to give up job training, and suggested that such a policy would only result in people refusing help. Kelly said the bill would harm 30,000 poor, “hard-working Kansans.”

For a bill protecting health care providers From lawsuits related to COVID-19 in January 2023, Kelly said lawmakers have made it too broad. He promised to work with them on a new version.

But House Speaker Ron Rickman Jr., an Olathe Republican, said Kelly had “a dedication to litigation lawyers” who generally support Democrats.


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