The governor of North Carolina filed suit Monday against the Obama administration’s Justice Department following threats to pull billions of dollars in federal education funding in response to the state’s recently passed transgender “bathroom law.”
The Justice Department sent a letter to Governor Pat McCrory, R, last week giving him until 5 p.m. on Monday to reverse the policy, which it argued is in violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
McCrory’s suit contends that the Justice Department is making “an attempt to unilaterally rewrite long-established federal civil rights laws in a manner that is wholly inconsistent with the intent of Congress and disregards decades of statutory interpretation by the courts.”
“The overwhelming weight of legal authority,” his suit said, “recognizes that transgender status is not a protected class under Title VII [of the Civil Rights Act].”
The governor pointed out in an appearance on Fox News Sunday over the weekend that “I don’t have the authority to change the law as governor of North Carolina. That is made by the North Carolina legislature.”
He also explained that the Justice Department is hanging its entire argument on the Civil Rights Act prohibiting discrimination based on one’s “sex,” but that term has not been associated with sexual identity, but one’s actual gender.
McCrory described the Obama administration’s actions towards North Carolina as “the federal government being a bully” and “making law.”
The Republican, who is up for re-election, noted that it was liberal Democrats who made this an issue by passing a city ordinance in Charlotte in February mandating that all public restrooms be made up open to people based on their “gender identity.”
Supporters of North Carolina’s H.B. 2 argue among other issues, denying men legal sanction to enter women’s bathrooms is a matter of public safety for women and children.
McCrory added in his Fox News interview that there is an “expectation of privacy” when one enters a restroom, which has been long standing. “You assume the only other people going into that restroom or shower facility [are] going to be [people] of the same gender.”
h/t: New York Times