Texas sues White House over Title IX protections for transgender athletes

The latest, plus more stories from the week in Texas politics.

By Wells DunbarJune 16, 2023 1:33 pm, ,

The Texas Attorney General’s office has sued the Biden administration over its interpretation of Title IX, which now protects against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

In 2021, the Biden administration extended Title IX protections to LGBTQ students. Now, as Texas Tribune political reporter James Barragán notes, those protections are in conflict with Texas law banning transgender students from participating in sports teams aligned with their gender.

“The question here is whether the federal government can withhold federal funding because of state laws that deal with transgender student athletes in particular,” Barragán says.

“Recently there’s been a signing of a law that bars transgender student athletes in college sports. There’s also one that was passed two years ago barring transgender student athletes in K-12 sports. And there’s a concern from Texas officials that because they passed those laws barring transgender student athletes, they could lose federal funding. So this is Texas going on the offensive trying to tackle that.”

The attorney general’s office claims that the Biden administration’s guidance could put over $6 billion in federal education funds at stake.

The lawsuit was filed by interim Attorney General John Scott, while Ken Paxton, who has criticized Biden’s expanded Title IX regulations, awaits his impeachment trial in the Texas Senate.

For more stories from the week in Texas politics, including more on Paxton’s securities fraud trial and mounting tension between Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, listen to the interview in the audio player above.

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