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National Review
National Review
1 Jul 2023
Brittany Bernstein

NextImg:Louisiana Governor Vetoes Bill Banning Gender-Transition Treatment for Minors

Louisiana governor Jon Bel Edwards, a Democrat, vetoed three bills this week that would have banned gender-transition treatment for minors and pushed back against the rise of gender ideology in the state’s public schools.

The “Stop Harming Our Kids Act” would ban puberty-blockers, hormone treatment, and surgeries for minors. The governor said in a six-page veto on Thursday that despite the bill’s name it is part of a “targeted assault on children.”

“This bill denies healthcare to a very small, unique, and vulnerable group of children,” the governor said. 

HB 466 would prevent teachers from discussing gender identity and sexual orientation in public school classrooms, similar to Florida’s Parental Rights in Education Law.

Edwards explained his decision to veto the bill by saying the measure places “vulnerable children” on the “front lines of a vicious culture war.”

“The bill is also unduly harsh as it allows students, teachers, and others serving students to totally disregard a student’s autonomy by forcing the student to answer to pronouns that they do not wish to use,” he said.

“This forced rejection of self-identity is particularly cruel to a child and this cruelty may adversely affect the child in their formative years,” Edwards added.

The third bill, HB 81, would require public school teachers to use the pronouns and names that the students had at birth.

It’s possible state lawmakers will decide to return to the Capitol for a veto session beginning on July 18. Such a decision would require a majority vote and only two such sessions have been held since 1974, but the Associated Press suggests it is “increasingly realistic that one will occur this year.”

If the state legislature enters a special session, a two-thirds approval from the state house and senate would be needed to override the governor’s veto. It appears likely the state legislature could successfully override the veto, as Republicans hold a two-thirds majority in both chambers and the three bills passed with more than a two-thirds vote during the regular session.