Kentucky governor vetoes bill banning transgender athletes from girls' sports

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Gov. Andy Beshear of Kentucky has vetoed a bill banning transgender athletes from competing in sex-segregated sporting events.

Beshear, a Democrat, refused to sign the bill Wednesday after claiming it was most likely unconstitutional. Beshear claimed the legislation “discriminates against transgender people” and therefore would not hold up in court.

The Republican-dominated state legislature can force the bill through with a majority vote in both houses, which is expected to happen next week.

University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas and Kentucky swimmer Riley Gaines react after finishing tied for 5th in the 200 Freestyle finals at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships on March 18th, 2022 at the McAuley Aquatic Center in Atlanta.
(Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

In a 56-18 vote with a supermajority needed, the Republican-controlled House first voted to override Cox’s veto. Shortly after, the Senate gave final approval to override the veto by a vote of 21-8.

Earlier last month, Indiana Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb also vetoed a bill that would have prevented transgender females from taking part in female sports, claiming the measure “leaves too many unanswered questions” and questioning the need for intervention at a state level.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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