Texas and ten other states have filed a lawsuit challenging the Obama administration’s “directive” to U.S. public schools to let transgender students use the bathrooms and locker rooms of their choice.
The federal lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, accuses the Obama administration of “running roughshod over commonsense policies” that protect children. The lawsuit includes Oklahoma, Alabama, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Tennessee, Maine, Arizona, Louisiana, Utah, and Georgia.
The lawsuit states that the transgender bathroom edict “has no basis in law,” and could cause “seismic changes in the operations of the nation’s school districts.”
The challenge, which asks a judge to declare the directive unlawful, follows a federal directive to U.S. schools this month to let transgender students use the bathrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identity.
Some conservative states have vowed defiance, calling the guidance a threat to safety while being accused of discrimination by supporters of transgender rights. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch has said “there is no room in our schools for discrimination.”
Texas’ lieutenant governor has previously said the state is willing to forfeit $10 billion in federal education dollars rather than comply.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott told reporters:
This lawsuit is challenging the way that the Obama administration is trampling the United States Constitution.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced the lawsuit at a news conference Wednesday afternoon:
Make no mistake — this is no reinterpretation of terms, it’s an entire rewrite of law. And that is constitutionally the purview of Congress, not the president of the United States.
Texas will continue to stand up to president Obama and his agencies, whenever and wherever they attempt to circumvent the law and ignore the voice of the people.
David Thweatt, superintendent of the Harrold Independent School District in Harrold, Texas, stressed the importance of protecting the privacy, safety, and dignity of all students:
The Obama administration is unlawfully intruding on local matters by imposing a one-size-fits-all decree for Texas schools. Washington’s mandate doesn’t fit our schools, so we are suing to keep the federal government out of our children’s locker rooms and restrooms.
Texas Senator Ted Cruz issued the following statement Wednesday afternoon:
I applaud the State of Texas for taking a strong stand on this issue. Through executive fiat, President Obama has threatened to cut off millions of dollars in federal aid to states that don’t allow men and boys into girls’ private restrooms and showers. This has no basis in federal law, and it once again demonstrates that Obama is more devoted to radical social engineering than to the democratic process and the separation of powers.
Moreover, Obama’s decree flies in the face of common sense. In my years in law enforcement, I’ve handled far too many cases of child molesters, pedophiles, and people who abused little kids. The threats of predators are serious, and we should not facilitate allowing grown men or boys to be in bathrooms with little girls. I firmly stand by Texas — and other states, such as North Carolina — that have stood up to this politically correct nonsense, and I hope that the courts can be trusted to enforce federal law, rather than Obama’s partisan preferences.