In Wisconsin, a Crucial Election Battleground, Anti-LGBTQ+ Attacks are Dead on Arrival

by Cullen Peele

Governor Evers vetoes bills that would restrict transgender students’ participation in school sports and forcibly out students to their families

Madison, WI — Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, hailed Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers for living up to his promise to LGBTQ+ youth and vetoing two blatantly discriminatory bills targeting transgender kids in the state. AB 377, which he vetoed today, would ban transgender students from participating on sports teams consistent with their gender identity; AB 510, which he vetoed late last week, is a curriculum censorship bill that would also force teachers to misgender and deadname students under the guise of so-called ‘parental rights’. These vetoes, in a state that will play a pivotal role in this year’s presidential election, come as recent polls underscore Americans’ rejection of candidates who espouse anti-transgender views and rhetoric. They also come as anti-LGBTQ+ bills are beginning to lose their luster, even in GOP-controlled state legislatures.

Human Rights Campaign’s Wisconsin State Director Wendy Strout issued the following statement:

“MAGA legislators in Wisconsin fail to understand that anti-LGBTQ+ bills are nothing but discriminatory dead ends. A majority of Wisconsinites and Americans increasingly reject the toxicity of anti-LGBTQ+ politicians, their views, and their rhetoric. We’ve seen this in election returns across the country, especially in battleground states. We thank Governor Evers for standing up for marginalized youth once again, with a grave warning to those on the far-right: attacks on defenseless kids may get you attention, but equality will always win elections.”

When the state Senate voted to approve AB 377 last month, Governor Evers vowed to veto “any bill making Wisconsin less safe, less inclusive, and less welcoming for LGBTQ people and kids—including this one. And I'll be damn proud to do it.”

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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