SD Governor Issues 'Temporary Fix' on Transgender Sports Issue

Kristi Noem signs 2 executive orders banning transgender girls playing at high school, college levels
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 30, 2021 9:55 AM CDT
Noem Signs Executive Orders: 'Only Girls Should Play Girls' Sports'
In this Oct. 13, 2020, file photo, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaks in Sioux Falls, SD.   (Erin Bormett/The Argus Leader via AP, File)

South Dakota's governor rolled out a "temporary fix" to what she deems unfairness in sports Monday night, issuing two executive orders that ban transgender girls and women from playing in sports designated for girls. Per the Argus Leader, Kristi Noem had at first vetoed a measure that would've made made it unlawful for athletes to play high school or college sports that weren't designated for the biological sex they were assigned at birth. Noem's concern that drove her initial veto was that states could face legal challenges on the college level from such organizations as the ACLU and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, per the National Review.

Noem tried to revise the bill via "style and form" changes to exempt college sports, but there was "major conservative backlash," per NPR, with GOP lawmakers arguing her changes would nullify much of the bill's intent. Hence, Noem's new executive orders: one prohibiting transgender girls from playing girls sports in K-12, the second doing the same on the college level—so long as such a ban doesn't run afoul of NCAA requirements. "Only girls should play girls' sports," Noem tweeted Monday, noting she'll be working to schedule a special legislative session in late May or early June to take on this topic and others, such as medical marijuana. (More Kristi Noem stories.)

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