Trump vows to reverse transgender student protections ‘on day one’

Former President Trump said Friday he would roll back transgender student protections enacted last month by the Biden administration “on day one” of his presidency if he is reelected in November.

The Education Department in April unveiled a final set of sweeping changes to Title IX, the federal civil rights law preventing sex discrimination in schools and education programs that receive government funding. The new regulations, which are slated to take effect Aug. 1, cover discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity for the first time.

“We’re gonna end it on day one,” Trump said Friday during an appearance on “Kayal and Company,” a conservative talk radio show in Philadelphia. “Don’t forget, that was done as an order from the president. That came down as an executive order. And we’re gonna change it — on day one it’s gonna be changed.”

President Biden in a 2021 executive order wrote that “all students should be guaranteed an educational environment free from discrimination on the basis of sex, including discrimination in the form of sexual harassment, which encompasses sexual violence, and including discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.”

“For students attending schools and other educational institutions that receive Federal financial assistance, this guarantee is codified, in part, in Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972,” Biden wrote in the executive order, which formally charged the Education Department with overhauling Title IX regulations instituted under Trump.

“Tell your people not to worry about it,” Trump told hosts Nick Kayal and Dawn Stensland on Friday, referring to the new Title IX rule. “It’ll be signed on day one. It’ll be terminated.”

Trump has also promised to enact at least a dozen policies targeting transgender rights as president, including a nationwide ban on transgender student-athletes competing in accordance with their gender identity and a federal law that recognizes only two genders. He has also vowed to punish health care providers who administer gender-affirming medical care to minors.

Although Title IX is a federal law, each administration takes a different approach to enforcing its regulations, which schools are then required to follow as a condition of receiving federal funding.

Republican governors, attorneys general and education officials have vowed to reject the law’s expanded protections for transgender students, and school districts in their state have been instructed to ignore them. Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders (R) this month ordered the state to defy the new regulations and said she would take legal action against the Biden administration “for any financial loss, including loss of funding.”

Lawsuits filed by more than a dozen Republican-led states this month allege the administration’s rule undermines federal nondiscrimination protections for students who are not transgender and incorrectly applies the reasoning of a 2020 Supreme Court ruling that protects employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity to Title IX.

The lawsuits, a majority of which were filed in conservative jurisdictions, are expected to succeed in at least temporarily blocking the new Title IX regulations from taking effect this summer.

The Biden administration has yet to finalize a separate rule governing athletics eligibility. The proposal unveiled by the Education Department last year would prohibit schools from enacting policies that categorically ban transgender student-athletes from sports teams that match their gender identity.

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