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Ohio House Overrides Governor’s Veto of Child Trans Bill – HotAir

Last year, Ohio’s legislature passed a sensible law dubbed the SAFE Act which would have banned so-called “gender-affirming care” for children in the state. The ban would have covered the prescription of cross-sex hormones, puberty blockers, and various surgeries for pediatric patients. It also would have blocked males from participating in girls’ sports. But Republican Governor Mike DeWine vetoed the bill, claiming that it was a case of the government overriding the rights of parents. Earlier this month, DeWine curiously issued an executive order banning genital mutilation surgery, but leaving the other issues on the table. Now we’ve reached the next twist in this long and winding road. The Ohio House has overridden the veto, potentially putting the SAFE Act back on the table. The state senate will convene and consider the bill in a couple of weeks.

The Ohio House of Representatives on Wednesday afternoon voted to override Governor Mike DeWine’s veto of legislation that would ban child gender transition hormone therapy and surgeries as well as boys in girls’ sports.

In a 65–28 vote, the chamber, after convening for a special session, rejected the Republican governor’s attempt to kill the SAFE Act. The bill now heads to the state senate, which will be in session on January 24, for an override vote.

In a statement following his veto, DeWine explained that he’d be announcing subsequent action specifically regarding child gender transition procedures, but not hormone injections and puberty blockers. Testosterone and estrogen infusions as well as puberty blockers arrest a child’s natural sex development and can cause irreparable, irreversible damage.

As you can see, the vote really wasn’t even close. A 65-28 override is a fairly definitive statement. The state senate only has 33 members, but the original bill attracted nearly a third of them (10) as sponsors and it passed fairly easily there as well. As National Review points out, a 2022 survey of Ohio voters found that 66% opposed transgender surgery or other related treatment for minors as well as the option for males to participate in female sports. Just 25% said they supported such procedures, with only 9% saying they “strongly support” the proposal.

Facing numbers like those, Ohio legislators who value their jobs are unlikely to buck the trend and support the veto. The real question here is still why DeWine bothered to veto the bill in the first place. And having done so, why did he feel compelled to issue an “emergency” executive order banning trans surgeries, but not the other procedures in question?

His original explanation makes little sense. It’s all well and good to argue in favor of parental rights and choices not being overridden by the government. But what if the parents made the choice to approve trans surgery for their child, no matter how disastrous that choice may have been? His executive order would still be overriding their rights while allowing other parents to make equally awful choices for their children having the other procedures. And how does he justify ignoring the rights of girls to not have to compete against boys with significant biological advantages in sports? There’s no consistency in these statements.

The bottom line in this debate remains the same as it has been from the beginning. Children do not have the capacity to make irreversible, life-altering choices based on very dubious (at best) science and they should not be allowed to do so. There is a valid argument to be made that parents who allow such procedures to take place are guilty of neglect or abuse at a minimum and doctors providing these “services” should have their licenses removed. Mike DeWine surely knows all of this in his heart. But I fear that the topic is so toxic in political circles that he was seeking to avoid having his name tied to one side or the other, leading to the veto. That attempt has failed spectacularly and his political opponents will now be free to label him as a member of the pro-trans army, no matter where his personal beliefs truly lie.

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