‘What About Us?’: Riley Gaines Fires Back At Sen. Dick Durbin For Bowing To Trans Activists
Photo courtesy of Riley Gaines
Photo courtesy of Riley Gaines

Former NCAA swimmer Riley Gaines took Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) to task during a Wednesday hearing, criticizing him for choosing to protect the feelings of trans-identifying males over biological women and girls.

Gaines appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee for a hearing titled “Defending the Civil Rights of LGBTQ+ Americans” — and while detailing her own experience competing against trans-identifying swimmer Lia Thomas, she addressed Chairman Durbin’s comments on the importance of sending the right “message” to trans-identifying individuals.


Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) asked Gaines to describe for the committee what it was like when she and her other competitors learned that in addition to swimming against Thomas in the championship meet, they would also be subjected to a locker room situation in which a biological male would be allowed to change alongside the female swimmers.

Gaines said that she and the other female swimmers had been blindsided by the locker room situation, and that when she spoke to officials about it, they shrugged off her concern and informed her they had “gotten around the rules” by making all of the locker rooms “unisex.”


“First and foremost, you just admitted this is a male by acknowledging that you had to change your rules to make the locker rooms unisex,” Gaines responded, adding that she had then realized that because of the rule change any male — for any reason – could have come into the locker room and watched the girls as they changed into their racing suits.

“It was so easy for them to dismiss our rights to privacy, ” Gaines added, turning her attention to Durbin. “Senator Durbin, in your opening statement you had mentioned this rhetoric — it’s, you had mentioned that – ‘What message does it send to trans individuals?’ And my comeback to that is what message does this send to women? To young girls who are denied of these opportunities?”

“So easily, their rights to privacy and safety thrown out of the window to protect a small population, protect one group as long as they’re happy,” Gaines continued. “What about us? That is the overall general consensus of how we all felt in that locker room.”

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  ‘What About Us?’: Riley Gaines Fires Back At Sen. Dick Durbin For Bowing To Trans Activists