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Gov. Sarah Sanders Rejects Biden Admin’s Title IX Changes

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders defied new Title IX rules issued by the Department of Education under President Joe Biden in an executive order earlier this month.

The rule change includes new protections for “transgender” students, but Sanders’ order prioritizes the rights and privacy concerns of the majority of students instead.

The Republican governor’s order reaffirms the state’s commitment to preserving the traditional understanding of sex as an “immutable characteristic of the human body” firmly “rooted in biology and the created order.”

“The government should celebrate, not erase, sex differences by providing proper protections for them,” the order says, as reported by The Epoch Times. It also states that the Biden administration “has rejected reality and chosen to appease their left-wing base over students’ safety and best interests.”

The Sanders’ directive is a response to the Biden administration’s expansion of Title IX’s definition of “sex” to include “gender identity.” Sanders believes that this deviates from the original intent of the law.

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“The Biden administration is attempting to unilaterally rewrite federal law to advance its radical gender ideology against women and girls,” Sanders, who served as one of President Donald Trump’s press secretaries, wrote in her order.

The GOP governor noted further in her EO that the Biden administration’s attempt to include gender identity and sexual orientation in the expanded rule was “plainly ridiculous.” She went on to predict that it would “lead to males unfairly competing in women’s sports; receiving access to women’s and girls’ locker rooms, bathrooms, and private spaces; and competing for women’s scholarships.” Sanders also noted that the original Title IX “contained a succinct 37 words” when it was signed into law in 1972.

The Biden administration’s reinterpretation of Title IX, detailed in a now-460,000-word document, has faced opposition from GOP attorneys general who have filed lawsuits against the new definition.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is also pushing back on the Biden administration’s rule change, vowing that he won’t comply with any part of it.

“We are not gonna let Joe Biden try to inject men into women’s activities,” DeSantis said on the X platform in a post containing a short video statement. “We are not gonna let Joe Biden undermine the rights of parents. And we are not gonna let Joe Biden abuse his constitutional authority to try to impose these policies on us here in Florida.”

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He added: “We will not comply.”

Arkansas lawmakers have passed a series of measures in recent months protecting traditional gender-designated spaces.

“The Arkansas Department of Education is ordered to provide specific guidance on how to enforce the rights of Arkansans to equal opportunity, free speech, due process, and privacy under the U.S. Constitution, Title IX, and state law, despite the Biden administration’s unlawful administrative rule,” Sanders’ order reads. “At no point should Arkansas law be ignored.”

Biden’s policy shift follows a significant report released last month in Great Britain. The Cass Report, which analyzed over 9,000 patient records of transgender youth, made several notable findings while recommending that individuals under 18 should not receive any type of gender-affirming treatment, such as hormone injections, and urged “great caution” in considering such treatments for individuals under 25.

“We have determined that there is insufficient evidence to support the safety or clinical effectiveness of PSH to justify its routine availability at this time,” stated the NHS last month. Although PSH treatment will still be accessible for participants in clinical trials and at private clinics, some British lawmakers are now advocating for a universal ban on its use.

The report provided various recommendations to enhance care but ultimately concluded that “for most young people, a medical pathway will not be the best way to manage their gender-related distress.” As a result, the NHS has reversed its longstanding practice of prescribing puberty-suppressing hormones (PSH) to children with gender dysphoria.

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