The Republican-led Kentucky legislature voted Wednesday to override Democrat Gov. Andy Beshear’s veto of a bill banning child sex changes as nearly 20 Left-wing protesters were arrested at the statehouse on criminal trespassing charges.
As lawmakers were meeting, Kentucky State Police were asked to restore order as protesters shouted and chanted, disrupting the ongoing legislative meeting. The bill passed the House 76-23 and in the Senate 29-8, surpassing the requirements to override Beshear’s veto.
The bill will ban life-altering procedures such as puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and sex change surgeries like performing double mastectomies on girls who say they are boys. Additionally, it will allow teachers to not be compelled to use students’ so-called preferred pronouns and prohibits the teaching of gender ideology at schools.
“We cannot allow people to continue down the path of fantasy, to where they’re going to end up 10, 20, 30 years down the road and find themselves miserable from decisions that they made when they were young,” said Republican Rep. Shane Baker said at an event supporting the bill before the vote.
The vote came as protesters shouted and chanted at lawmakers, eventually leading to the arrest of 19 people after police were asked to restore order.
“The Sergeant of Arms requested that KSP assist in restoring order today in the House gallery chambers. KSP gave each individual the option to leave without any enforcement action or be placed under arrest,” police spokesman Captain Paul Blanton told Fox News. “KSP arrested 19 individuals. They have been cited for criminal trespassing 3rd degree.”
In the Kentucky state Capitol rotunda after supporters for SB150 spoke. pic.twitter.com/Y6gLEOzj3W
— Matt Stone (@mattstonephotog) March 29, 2023
Many Republicans said the legislation was needed to protect children from harmful procedures.
According to Republican state Sen. Robby Mills, “puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones, when administered to youth under 18 for the purpose of altering their appearance, is dangerous for the health of that child.”
Left-wing legal groups are promising to challenge the bill in courts, a move that has succeeded in deep-red Alabama and Arkansas for the time being. “While we lost the battle in the legislature, our defeat is temporary. We will not lose in court,” said Chris Hartman, the executive director of an LGBTQ group called the Fairness campaign.
Conservative family groups in the Bluegrass State supported the legislation, with The Family Foundation’s David Walls saying that it enacted a “policy in alignment with the truth that every child is created as a male or female and deserves to be loved, treated with dignity and accepted for who they really are.”
Kentucky joins states like Tennessee, Mississippi, Iowa, and Utah in banning the sex change procedures on minors while blue states like Minnesota have declared themselves a “refuge” for such procedures.