It’s official! Officials in North Carolina filed a lawsuit Monday morning over the Justice Department’s ultimatum that the state reject its transgender bathroom bill that day. The department claimed the bill violates the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by discriminating on the basis of sex.
In the lawsuit, Governor Pat McCrory called the ultimatum “baseless and blatant overreach.” In comments to “Fox News Sunday” over the weekend, he explained that the Justice Department has no legal authority to strike down his state’s law. In order to do this, the federal government would have to pass its own law on transgender bathrooms, he said.
Congress could pass a law and have the president sign it, determining a national bathroom policy, or a federal agency could issue a ruling to do the same. But the Civil Rights Act of 1964 only prohibits discrimination on the basis of “sex,” not gender. “The federal law uses the term ‘sex,’ and Congress does not define sex as including gender identity,” McCrory said. “So right now the Justice Department is making law for the federal government as opposed to enforcing law.”
McCrory also said his state was not given enough time to reverse the law, and that this is “the federal government being a bully.”