A Federal Judge In Tennessee Blocks Biden’s Policy On Transgender Bathrooms And Women’s Sports Teams

A federal judge in Tennessee has temporarily blocked Biden administration directives allowing transgender workers and students to use bathrooms and locker rooms and join sports teams that correspond with their gender identity. Instead, they will now have to use the ones for their actual gender.

Judge Charles Atchley Jr. of the Eastern District of Tennessee ruled on Friday that the administration’s directives would make it impossible for some states to enforce laws on transgender athletes’ participation in girls’ sports and access to bathrooms.

A coalition of 20 Republican attorneys general brought a lawsuit last year against the federal government, noting that they stood to lose significant federal funding as the Biden directives conflicted with their state laws.

Atchley agreed with that, writing in his order that the states “cannot continue regulating pursuant to their state laws while simultaneously complying with Defendants’ guidance.”

Oklahoma Attorney General John O’Connor, one of the plaintiffs, said in a written statement on Saturday that Atchley’s order “is a major victory for women’s sports and the privacy and safety of girls and women in their school bathrooms and locker rooms.”

The Justice Department, the Department of Education, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are defendants in the lawsuit. None immediately replied to requests for comment on Saturday. The three had requested that Atchley dismiss the states’ lawsuit, a motion the judge denied in his Friday ruling.

The coalition of Republican states argued the Biden administration directives improperly expanded on a 2020 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that extended anti-discrimination protections to transgender workers.
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John Nightbridge is a veteran reporter, researcher, and economic policy major from UCLA. Passionate about world issues and potential ways to solve them is a significant focus of his work. Writing freelance and reading the news are John's passions at work. Outside of work, it's all about sky diving, surfing, and stock market modeling.