As Bathroom Bill Looms in Lege, Transgender Wrestler Wins Texas Girls’ Championship

Our daily roundup of Texas headlines.

By Becky FogelFebruary 27, 2017 7:52 am

The Standard’s news roundup gives you a quick hit of interesting, sometimes irreverent, and breaking news stories from all over the state.

Last week, President Trump decided to revoke protections for transgender students passed under the Obama administration. But soon after that decision – something else happened in Texas. A 17-year-old transgender boy won the Class 6A Texas state girls’ wrestling championship over the weekend.  Asa Merritt reports from Houston:

Each time Mack Beggs won a match, the giant Berry Center erupted in both boos and cheers. Texas rules force Beggs – who is taking testosterone as part of his transition – to compete in the girls league. Lou Wevaer is with the LGBT advocacy group Equality Texas. He says Biggs win is historic. 

“So often the story about transfolks is they’re alone, that they’re not going to make in…In our little corner of the world something amazing is happening.”

Despite Beggs desires to wrestle against boys and mounting complaints about the fairness of Texas policy, a spokesperson from the schools said there is no immediate plan to revisit the rule.” 

Beggs entered this weekend’s competition unbeaten in over 50 matches against girls. He addressed the media after winning the state championship saying quote: “I wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for my teammates. That’s honestly what the spotlight should’ve been on, my teammates.”

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick says Senate Bill 6 – the so-called bathroom bill – will soon have its first public hearing this legislative session. Patrick spoke to WFAA’s Inside Texas Politics program on Sunday:

“Here’s what the print media doesn’t understand. We can’t bring a bill to the floor until the 60th day which is March 10th, unless it’s an emergency item. And we had four emergency items and that was not one of those that Governor Abbott mentioned, so we’re actually going to have a hearing on it, the week next. And then I believe we will move it.” 

He said legislating which bathrooms people can and can’t use isn’t a fight he wanted to have.

“The school districts, most of them have always done a very good job of handling kids with all kinds of issues. But Fort Worth started the fight,” he says. “And now Dripping Springs started the fight, so we don’t want parents to have to fight this school district by school district.”

The Lt. Gov. called on the Fort Worth Superintendent to resign last spring over a policy that allowed transgender students to use the bathroom that matched their gender identity.

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn plans to reintroduce legislation that would allow gun owners with concealed carry licenses in their home states to exercise those same rights in states with similar laws. He made the announcement at the Texas Rifle Association’s annual general meeting in Round Rock over the weekend.

Cornyn previously introduced the Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act in 2015. That 2015 bill’s lead cosponsors included a Democrat from West Virginia and Republicans from South Dakota and Louisiana.