Texas governor gives first clear support for 'bathroom bill'

Frederick Owens
April 19, 2017

The NCAA is again letting North Carolina host championship events under that state's newly revised bathroom bill.

It requires government offices at all levels, public school districts and public universities to require people to use "bathrooms or changing facilities" of the sex that's on their birth certificate, regardless whether that's the gender they consider themselves.

After clearing the Senate along party lines, a Republican-sponsored bill to add new requirements for voters registering within 30 days of an election is up for a public hearing in the House Tuesday morning.

After the Senate approved a sweeping bill offering taxpayer funds to private and religious schools, the House overwhelmingly passed language in its version of the state budget forbidding the practice - likely killing state-subsidized "school choice".

The Senate passed House Bill 1186 on a 22-11 vote and heads to Gov. John Hickenlooper. This time around, Tuesday's hearing before the House election law committee is scheduled to start at 10 a.m.in that same larger chamber from the outset.

It does appear to appease Republican state Rep. Larry Taylor - legislation that seeks to simplify the state's complicated funding formula - will be debated by his Education committee.

When the bill was heard in committee in the house, co-sponsor Lois Landgraf, R-Colorado Springs, said reducing unintended pregnancies means reducing abortions.

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"It's a small change that's going to have a huge impact", she said.

Business groups in Texas have lobbied hard against the measure.

Supporters say the legislation will help ensure that only people who actually live in the Granite State vote here, cutting down on what they say is voter fraud.

House budget writers in March rejected Sununu's plan to target $9 million for full-day kindergarten in the most needy communities, but the House Finance Committee budget was never adopted.

For the first time, Gov. Greg Abbott weighed in on the controversial bathroom bills in the Texas House and Senate.

Critics of the measure said it would put an undue burden on those who tend to move around a lot, especially lower-income residents, who might not have utility bills or other paperwork to show they reside in New Hampshire.

"It amends the current definition of domicile to (say that a person who establishes) a temporary presence (in the state) without (that) person taking action to carry out (an) intent to make New Hampshire their domicile, does not necessarily gain a voting domicile", Birdsell said.

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