Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear Vetoes Transgender Sports Ban

Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear on April 6 vetoed a controversial bill that would ban transgender women and girls from playing on sports teams that match their gender identity from grades six up to college.

Beshear vetoed Senate Bill 93 or the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act, citing concerns that it could provoke lawsuits against the state and cause harm against transgender people.

“Transgender children deserve public officials’ efforts to demonstrate that they are valued members of our communities through compassion, kindness, and empathy, even if not understanding,” Beshear wrote in a signed veto letter.

Beshear cited guidelines being implemented by the Kentucky High School Athletic Association (KHSAA) regarding transgender student-athletes.

“Under the KHSAA policy, a student-athlete cannot compete if they have an unfair advantage,” Beshear said.

“The KHSAA policy requires that a student-athlete who has undergone sex reassignment after puberty must take hormonal therapy in a verifiable manner and for a sufficient length of time to minimize gender-related advantages in competition,” Beshear further said.

Beshear becomes the third governor this year to veto an anti-transgender sports ban after Republican governors in Utah and Indiana vetoed similar bills in March.

However, Republicans passed the bill with veto-proof majorities and could override Beshear’s decision when they meet in mid-April.

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