Sen. Roger Marshall (R-KS) spoke from the Senate floor on Thursday, calling on his colleagues to support his resolution to prevent the Biden administration from withholding school lunch money funding from schools that don’t allow children to use the bathroom of the opposite sex. Democrats, however, remained mostly united to ensure the defeat of Marshall’s resolution.
Marshall’s resolution needed a simple majority to pass in the Democrat-controlled Senate but came up short, with only 47 senators voting in the affirmative and 50 senators, all from the Democratic caucus, voting against it. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) broke away from his party to vote with Republicans.
Marshall has been sounding alarm bells for months after the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) updated its anti-discrimination policies to include sexual orientation and gender identity in accordance with a 2021 executive order by President Joe Biden. The move means that schools receiving funds from the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service must abide by policies that prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
In July, Marshall introduced the Congressional Resolution Act (CRA) of disapproval that would prevent the federal government from withholding lunch money from schools that don’t go along with Biden’s radical gender theory policies. Marshall’s CRA was criticized by those on the Left, including Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA), who claimed it “makes it possible for some random lunch lady to deny lunch to a hungry child because she says her god tells her to.”
Marshall responded to the criticism from the Democratic senator, telling The Daily Wire that it’s the Biden administration that is threatening to take lunches away from school children.
“Don’t be fooled here, the Biden Administration is the only player in this policy fight that is taking away lunches from children,” Marshall said in a statement. “There is real-world evidence that USDA’s policy has already taken away school lunch funding from low-income children. Weaponizing school lunch money in pursuit of their radical agenda and putting students in the crosshairs is unconscionable, and we will not stand for it.”
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) also spoke on the floor of the Senate Thursday, joining Marshall in sounding the alarm on the Biden administration’s updated anti-discrimination policy.
“This outrageous policy by the Biden Administration would deny American children food unless parents and schools ram radical gender ideology down children’s throats,” Cruz said in a statement shared with The Daily Wire. “No girl at school should feel threatened because it’s Joe Biden’s policy that a boy can use a girl’s restroom at school. No girl playing girls’ sports should have to compete against someone who has a physical, biological advantage. This Biden Administration rule is the opposite of what Title IX is all about, and I hope Congress puts an end to it.”
The USDA announced in May of 2022 that the agencies would prohibit discrimination based on sex as defined in Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and also “in line with President Biden’s Executive Order on Preventing and Combatting Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation.” Along with Marshall and Cruz voicing their concerns, 22 attorneys general have also sued the USDA over the updated policy.
A CRA “requires agencies to report the issuance of ‘rules’ to Congress and provides Congress with special procedures, in the form of a joint resolution of disapproval, under which to consider legislation to overturn rules,” according to the Congressional Research Service. If a CRA of disapproval is passed by both Houses and signed by the president or if Congress overrides the president’s veto, “the rule at issue cannot go into effect or continue in effect.”
Marshall’s CRA is co-sponsored by numerous Republicans, including Sens. Tom Cotton (R-AR), James Lankford (R-OK), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), James Risch (R-ID), Mike Braun (R-IN), Josh Hawley (R-MO), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Roger Wicker (R-MS), and Joni Ernst (R-IA).
“The Biden Administration has no authority to force schools to allow biological boys access to girls’ bathrooms and locker rooms or to allow boys to compete in girls’ sports,” Marshall said. “My CRA overturns Joe Biden’s egregious rule and takes politics out of the lunch line.”