The NCAA, which operates out of Indianapolis, has taken some substantial heat in recent months with the Lia Thomas story.
And Governor Eric Holcomb made sure Monday the Hoosier State would remain in the eye of the “trans-athlete” storm by vetoing a bill that would ban biological males from competing against females in a school setting.
Holcomb, who was in support of the legislation last month, wrote in a letter defending his decision that his veto was warranted because the bill is essentially a solution for a problem that doesn’t exist in Indiana. He said the law “falls short” in providing a consistent statewide policy for “fairness” in school sports from kindergarten to 12th grade.
While the ACLU of Indiana says it plans to sue against this “hateful legislation”, other opponents to the bill called it bigoted and linked it to a potential increase in child/teen suicide. Mike Schmuhl, Chairman of the Indiana Democratic Party, said “signing House Bill 1041 into law would have put the lives of our children in jeopardy” and that “this unnecessary debate has set a tone with kids that being transgender means something is wrong with them. It must be said that nothing is wrong and being transgender is exactly how God created you and is exactly who you are born to be.”
In Februrary, Holcomb signalled support for the bill. “I agree, adamantly, that boys should be playing boys sports and girls should be playing girls sports, and mixed sports should be just that… so how we craft the actual language and support organizations like the IHSAA (Indiana High School Athletic Association), who’s done an admirable job to date, we need to make sure that they can continue to do just that.”
The measure may still become law as Republicans hold a supermajority in both chambers at Indiana’s statehouse and need only a simple majority. Overriding Governor Holcomb’s veto could take place May 24th when legislative leaders convene for a tentative one-day meeting. Ten other Republican-led states have already enacted similar laws designed to protect female athletes from male encroachment.