pcloudy.png
Sunday May 16th, 2021 7:53PM

US appeals court considers Idaho transgender athletes ban

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A U.S. appeals court on Monday gave little indication of how it might rule on the constitutionality of the first law in the nation banning transgender women and girls from playing on women’s sports teams.

The three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard virtual arguments in the case that could have far-ranging consequences as more states follow conservative Idaho’s lead.

Idaho passed its law last year, and more than 20 states have considered such proposals this year. Bans have been enacted in Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee and West Virginia. Florida lawmakers passed a bill, and South Dakota’s governor issued an executive order.

On Monday, conservative Republican lawmakers in Kansas failed to override Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s veto of a proposed ban on transgender athletes in girls’ and women’s school sports.

The judges on Monday focused at one point on whether the case was still relevant because one of the plaintiffs, Lindsay Hecox, had dropped out of Boise State University after failing to qualify for the women's cross country team. Her attorney said Hecox planned to return in the fall and try out for the team again.

Judges also questioned whether the other plaintiff, who feared invasive tests to prove her gender that are outlined in the law, had standing to sue because she is not transgender and her gender identity had not been challenged.

It's possible the court could rule the case is no longer relevant and dismiss it without ruling on its merits.

Roger Brooks, an attorney with a Christian conservative group defending the Idaho law, said he hoped that would not happen because the case needed a definitive ruling.

“This is a situation that is live and is going to be ongoing,” he said at a news conference after the arguments.

Supporters say such laws are needed because transgender female athletes have physical advantages. Opponents say the laws are discriminatory and, in Idaho, an invasion of privacy because of tests required should an athlete’s gender be challenged.

Lawmakers in Idaho also have argued that allowing transgender athletes on girls’ and women’s teams would negate nearly 50 years of progress women have made since the 1972 federal legislation credited with opening up sports to female athletes.

But those opposed to the ban have cited the same Title IX federal civil rights law that prohibits sex-based discrimination.

“Ultimately, this is (an Idaho) law that harms all women and girls,” said Chase Strangio, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union, which is seeking to stop the law from taking effect.

The law prohibits transgender students who identify as female from playing on female teams sponsored by public schools, colleges and universities.

It does not apply to men’s teams, which prompted one judge to ask whether discrimination existed.

“They're not barred,” Judge Andrew Kleinfeld said. “Anybody can play on the boys' team whether they're transgender or not.”

The ACLU and Legal Voice women’s rights group sued last year on behalf of Hecox and an unnamed Boise-area high school student who is cisgender, meaning her gender identity matches the one she was assigned at birth.

The lawsuit contends the law violates the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause because it is discriminatory and the Fourth Amendment’s protections against invasion of privacy because of tests required should an athlete’s gender be challenged.

A federal judge in Idaho temporarily blocked the law from taking effect last year. Idaho and the conservative Christian group that intervened, Alliance Defending Freedom, appealed.

The group is representing Madison Kenyon of Johnston, Colorado, and Mary Marshall of Twin Falls, Idaho, who run track and cross country on scholarships at Idaho State University and are concerned they could have to unfairly compete against transgender athletes.

The appeals court didn't indicate when it might issue a ruling.

___

This story has been corrected to show that the court panel met virtually, not in San Francisco.

  • Associated Categories: U.S. News, Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
US appeals court considers Idaho transgender athletes ban
A three-judge panel of a U.S. appeals court gave little indication of how it might rule concerning the constitutionality of the first law in the nation banning transgender women and girls from playing on women’s sports team
7:41PM ( 6 minutes ago )
Bill and Melinda Gates announce they are getting divorced
Bill and Melinda Gates say they're divorcing
7:23PM ( 25 minutes ago )
Chauvin juror defends participation in Washington protest
One of the jurors who convicted Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd is defending his participation in a protest last summer in Washington, D
7:04PM ( 44 minutes ago )
U.S. News
Whose 'Big Lie'? Trump's proclamation a new GOP litmus test
Donald Trump and his supporters are intensifying efforts to shame members of the party who are seen as disloyal to the former president and his false claims that last year’s election was stolen
7:12PM ( 35 minutes ago )
White Sox's Robert could miss rest of year with hip flexor
White Sox center fielder Luis Robert could miss the remainder of the season because of a torn right hip flexor, another major blow for a team eyeing a deep playoff run
7:06PM ( 42 minutes ago )
FDA expected to OK Pfizer vaccine for teens within week
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for young adults age 12 and older by next week, setting up shots for many before the beginning of the next school year
7:00PM ( 47 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Trump's 'big lie' becomes new litmus test for success in GOP
Donald Trump and his supporters are intensifying efforts to shame members of the party who are seen as disloyal to the former president and his false claims that last year’s election was stolen
6:30PM ( 1 hour ago )
EPA rule to phase out gases used in refrigerators, coolants
The Environmental Protection Agency is proposing to phase down production and use of hydrofluorocarbons, highly potent greenhouse gases commonly used in refrigerators and air conditioners
6:10PM ( 1 hour ago )
Biden promotes education spending at stops in Virginia
President Joe Biden traveled to coastal Virginia to promote his plans to increase spending on education and children, part of his $1.8 trillion families proposal announced last week
5:22PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Albania’s Socialists seek to impeach nation's president
An Albania lawmaker says the governing left-wing Socialist Party legislators have started the impeachment process against the country’s president who they accuse of violating the constitution during the last election
2:34PM ( 5 hours ago )
Democrats must find narrow path to curb high medicine prices
President Joe Biden’s call for authorizing Medicare to negotiate lower prescription drug prices has energized Democrats on a politically popular idea they’ve been pushing for nearly 20 years only to encounter frustration
12:59PM ( 6 hours ago )
Albania’s Socialists launch impeachment of president
An Albania lawmaker says the governing left-wing Socialist Party legislators have started the impeachment process against the country’s president who they accuse of violating the constitution during the last election
12:43PM ( 7 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Bill and Melinda Gates announce they are getting divorced
Bill and Melinda Gates say they're divorcing
7:23PM ( 25 minutes ago )
Chauvin juror defends participation in Washington protest
One of the jurors who convicted Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd is defending his participation in a protest last summer in Washington, D
7:04PM ( 44 minutes ago )
San Diego boat wreck kills 3, shows risks of ocean smuggling
The Coast Guard has ended its search for survivors of the San Diego boat wreck, which killed three and injured 29 on a bright Sunday morning near tidepools of Cabrillo National Monument, a popular spot for tourists and hikers
6:49PM ( 58 minutes ago )
Storms spawn twisters in Mississippi, kill driver in Georgia
Multiple tornadoes have caused damage across Mississippi, destroying homes and uprooting trees
6:44PM ( 1 hour ago )
Idaho intern faced 'overwhelming' hassle after rape report
From nearly the moment a 19-year-old intern’s report that she was raped by an Idaho lawmaker became public, she faced harassment from right-wing groups and even other lawmakers
6:33PM ( 1 hour ago )