Kansas GOP Fails to Override Veto, Ban Squashed

(USNewsMag.com) – A bill that would have banned transgender procedures for minors in Kansas failed to pass the state House after two Republican lawmakers changed their votes at the last minute, killing the proposal in its tracks.

On Monday, April 29th, the Kansas House voted to overturn a veto from Gov. Laura Kelly on a bill that would not only ban “gender-affirming care” for children but would also have prohibited state employees working with minors to promote the social transition of those children struggling with their identities. While the veto override passed the state Senate with the margin needed in a vote of 27-13, the 82-43 vote in the House failed to meet the two-thirds majority needed by supporters to pass the motion.

Republican supporters of the bill argue the ban is necessary to protect minors who are vulnerable from what the lawmakers described as experimentation, carrying the risks of long-term health impacts. The law would ban puberty blockers, cross-sex hormone treatments, and transgender surgeries for anyone below the age of 18.

Since the governor’s veto in April, critics honed in on a specific provision that would have opened up state workers to prosecution if they advocated or recommended for children to socially transition, which means to begin identifying as transgender before any medical treatments have been administered. Socially transitioning entails changing how one dresses, what name one uses, and how others refer to that person.

The Kansas legislation would have been stricter than most bans happening around the country right now as concerned parents and voters push back against what they believe is a dangerous ideology corrupting and confusing the youth. The ideological battle also has ethical and legal implications, touching on medical malpractice and free speech.

So far, 24 states have enacted outright bans or heavy restrictions on gender-affirming care for minors, such as Florida, Alabama, West Virginia, and Tennessee. Some of these bans are currently blocked due to ongoing legal battles challenging the laws.

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