Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, a Democrat, has introduced a bill to Congress that would bar biological males, including those who identify as transgender females, from competing in women’s sports.
The “Protect Women’s Sports Act,” co-sponsored by Republican Rep. Markwayne Mullin, provides that Title IX protections for female athletes be based on “biological sex.”
“Title IX was a historic provision championed by Hawaii’s own Congresswoman Patsy Mink in order to provide equal opportunity for women and girls in high school and college sports,” Gabbard said in a statement. “It led to a generational shift that impacted countless women, creating life-changing opportunities for girls and women that never existed before.”
However, she explained, “Title IX is being weakened by some states who are misinterpreting Title IX, creating uncertainty, undue hardship and lost opportunities for female athletes. Our legislation protects Title IX’s original intent which was based on the general biological distinction between men and women athletes based on sex.”
Rep. Mullin argued that allowing biological males to compete in women’s sports "diminishes" the equality that Title IX was designed to give women and "takes away from the original intent of Title IX."
“As the father of three girls involved in athletics, I want them to be able to compete on a level playing field. I am proud to lead this bill that will safeguard the integrity of women’s sports and ensure female athletes can compete fairly," he stated.
In October, a survey found that the vast majority of Americans, regardless of their political affiliation, support the preservation of single-sex spaces and women’s sports as female-only.
The poll, which was conducted by Spry Strategies on behalf of Women’s Liberation Front, found that a majority of likely voters in the 2020 election were not in favor of “gender identity” policies, including the Equality Act, which passed in the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives last year.
The poll results found that black and Hispanic voters approved of such things as single-sex prisons and homeless shelters, at a higher rate than whites.
In response to the question: “Do you think men who are sex offenders or domestic abusers should be allowed to serve their sentences in women’s prisons,” 66.93% of those polled strongly disagreed. An additional 10.44% said they disagreed.
Regarding transgender-identifying males being allowed to compete in girls’ and women’s sports, nearly 67% of respondents indicated that they either disagreed or strongly disagreed with it.
Former Vice President Joe Biden has vowed to pass the Equality Act, which failed to pass the Republican-led Senate, in the first 100 days of his administration.
The legislation would allow biological males who identify as females to compete in women’s sports and allow transgender individuals to use restrooms, showers and locker rooms in accordance with their gender identity as opposed to their biological gender.
While Biden has touted the Equality Act as “the best vehicle for ensuring equal rights under the law for LGBTQ+ Americans, and will guarantee that LGBTQ+ individuals are protected under existing civil rights laws,” conservatives, religious leaders and some progressives have expressed concerns about the bill’s implications.
Penny Nance, CEO and President of the public policy organization Concerned Women for America, said in October that transgender policies in educational institutions had turned Title IX “on its head, denying the rights of women and girl athletes to compete only against athletes of the same sex and threatening the future of women’s sports.”