HRC’s Weekly State Fights Report: MAGA State Leaders Threaten to Refuse to Comply with Title IX

by Brandon Wolf

Data Updated 4.29



Desperate to pander to the MAGA fringe at the expense of the overwhelming majority of their constituents, GOP politicians in a handful of states have begun threatening to refuse to comply with the new Title IX rule that clarifies protections for sexual assault survivors, pregnant and parenting students, and LGBTQ+ young people. In Louisiana, State Superintendent Brumley urged schools not to update policies and practices to reflect the guidance. In Oklahoma, embattled and deeply unpopular State Superintendent Ryan Walters, who has faced mounting calls for removal, issued similar orders. Last week, Human Rights Campaign Senior Director for Legal Policy Cathryn Oakley spoke at an Oklahoma Board of Education meeting, laying out the potential consequences of his recklessness. South Carolina State Superintendent Ellen Weaver echoed the right wing’s talking points. And in Florida, virulently anti-LGBTQ+ Governor Ron DeSantis launched a transphobic tirade, promising to “fight back” against the protections for students. Multiple states have now filed suit over the new rule.

Failure to comply with the new Title IX rule, which is slated to go into effect on August 1, not only continues to undermine the rights and safety of LGBTQ+ students, but could have damaging financial consequences for schools – and, as a result, all students. Those consequences could include costly litigation and a significant loss of funding, to the tune of billions of dollars. Funding that should be going to helping young people achieve academic excellence. A handful of politicians, whose sole priority is their own political profile, appear willing to sacrifice the education of millions. Choosing theatrics and hateful rhetoric over protecting and furthering the needs of their state's students is shameful.


The Kansas state legislature reconvened yesterday eyeing an override of Governor Kelly’s veto of a ban on gender affirming care for transgender youth. The Senate took a vote in the morning, advancing a possible override to the House. However, the Kansas House voted to sustain the governor’s veto, needed relief for many Kansas families who have been facing the unthinkable possibility of having to flee their communities and their state so that their child can get the health care they need.

A similar bill has been filed in South Carolina and could make its next move this week.


Pro-Equality Bills

  • Michigan: On Tuesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed HB4718, a bill banning the LGBTQ+ panic defense in the state.

Anti-LGBTQ+ Bills

  • Arizona: On Wednesday, Governor Hobbs vetoed SB1182, a bill restricting access to school shower rooms for transgender students.

  • Alabama: On Tuesday, the House passed HB130, a “Don't Say LGBTQ+” bill that would prohibit any classroom discussions or instruction related to sexual orientation or gender identity from grades K-12.

  • Oklahoma: On Tuesday, the Oklahoma Senate passed HB1449, an LGBTQ+ Erasure bill that establishes an exclusionary definition of “sex.” On Wednesday, the House passed SB1677, an anti-LGBTQ+ religious refusal bill.

  • Tennessee:
    • On Tuesday, Governor Lee signed SB2503. This new law will terminate the human rights commission with no wind-down period, create the human rights division in the Office of the Attorney General, and transfer the commission's functions to the new division.

    • The governor also signed SB2766 into law. This law removes a teacher's obligation to ensure that students are not denied or excluded from important educational programs or benefits on the basis of their family status or their sexual orientation. It also removes the requirement that sex ed programs in school be medically accurate.

    • Also on Tuesday, the House passed SB 2749 (HRC opposes), a bill that would erode trust between students and trusted school staff by forcing school employees to broadly disclose personal information about a student's well-being to their parents.

    • On April 19th, SB 1810 (HRC opposes), a bill that would force school staff to out transgender students without their consent, was transmitted to the governor for consideration. Also awaiting the governor’s signature is SB 2501 (HRC opposes), a bill establishing deadlines for colleges and universities to investigate student and employee reports alleging that they were penalized for refusing to support so-called “divisive concepts”, specific ideologies, or political views. Under this bill, an institution that fails to investigate or take action within the timeframe would be subject to a withholding of state funds.


“Don’t tell me change isn’t happening, because my family is proof. We are all proof in this room. Read the history of America, the story of America is a story of hope. It’s a story of progress. It’s a story of change—and lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, and trans folks. We have always been at the forefront of that change.”

HRC President Kelley Robinson in a toast at the Time100 Gala

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The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ+ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.


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