GOP Governor Has Yet To Sign Controversial Bill

Ohio Republican Governor Mike DeWine on December 29 vetoed a bill that would have banned transgender medical treatment to minors and barred males from participating in women’s sports, ABC News reported.

In a press conference after the veto, the governor said he believed the issues raised in the legislation could be addressed by administrative rules which would have “a better chance of surviving judicial review and being adopted.”

DeWine conceded that he agreed with several of the state lawmakers’ concerns and planned to draft rules to address transgender treatments for minors, including preventing those under 18 from undergoing gender reassignment surgeries, as well as rules imposing restrictions on “pop-up clinics” that cater to transgenders.

So far, around 20 states have enacted restrictions on transgender medical procedures for minors. However, many have faced legal challenges, including an Arkansas law that a federal judge ruled was unconstitutional.

DeWine had ten days to either sign or veto the bill once it had reached his desk but waited until Day 10 to finally veto it, claiming that he had used the time to speak to those in the so-called transgender community who would have been affected by the legislation.

When asked by a reporter about his position on allowing so-called transgender athletes to compete in women’s sports, DeWine said he had “focused on the part of the bill that I thought affected the most people and the most children by far.”

News5Cleveland reported on January 2 that the Ohio House would be returning from winter recess sooner than scheduled to attempt to override the governor’s veto on the legislation, which many Republican state lawmakers believe would be possible.

Ohio state Rep. Josh Williams told a reporter on Tuesday that he was certain the House could override DeWine’s veto.

The state House only needs 59 votes to override a governor’s veto. However, the governor believes that his proposed administrative rules provide a suitable alternative to the legislation.