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RELEASE: Ban on Gender-Affirming Care for Trans Youth Appears Imminent in Kansas Thanks to GOP Supermajorities in the State Legislature

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WASHINGTON — This week, both chambers of the Republican-controlled Kansas Legislature passed legislation that would ban gender-affirming care for trans children. The bill now heads to Democratic Governor Laura Kelly’s desk, and she’s expected to veto the anti-trans legislation. However, state Republicans likely have the numbers needed to override her veto and make this dangerous attack on trans youth state law. The House passed the bill 82-39, with two GOP absences that could provide the two votes needed for a veto-proof majority. The Senate passed the bill 27-13 along partisan lines, which is a veto-proof Republican supermajority.

This toxic proposal to ban gender-affirming care in Kansas illustrates the dangers of unchecked MAGA extremism, empowered by GOP supermajorities, that can override Democratic governors’ vetoes. 

According to the American Civil Liberties Union, over 475 anti-LGBTQ+ bills have already been introduced in 40 states around the country in 2024, making dangerous bigotry a mainstay for state Republicans. In states with Democratic majorities, these hateful proposals are blocked and have no chance of becoming law, and in many states, Democratic leaders are enacting new protections and making sure inclusion and safety are priorities. But, in states like Kansas, controlled by Republican legislatures, these bills have an alarming chance of passing, creating a landscape of hostility towards the LGBTQ+ community while simultaneously stripping away their fundamental rights under state law. This dangerous Republican proposal in Kansas is the latest example of why breaking up Republican supermajorities in both chambers of the state legislature is a top priority in 2024 and why Kansas remains on our target map in 2024.

Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee Communications Director Abhi Rahman issued the following statement:

“This is a fire alarm moment for protecting trans youth in Kansas. A dangerous and hateful ban on gender-affirming care is imminent thanks to toxic Republican legislative supermajorities, who’ve rendered the Democratic governor’s veto pen ineffective. The Kansas Legislature is currently a hotbed of GOP extremism where the Republicans are out of step with voters, who increasingly support progressive change. That’s why building Democratic power to protect the governor’s veto in Kansas is essential in 2024. Trans youth are under attack in this country, and Kansas is just the latest example. The DLCC is committed to investing in states across the country where we are razor close to defeating GOP supermajorities. We will continue to sound the alarm on GOP extremism threatening fundamental freedoms as we plan our most expansive target map ever, which includes key states like Kansas. We must protect trans youth amid this constant assault from MAGA Republicans.”

The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC) is the official Democratic Party committee dedicated to winning America’s state legislatures and building state infrastructure. Over the last decade, we have fought cycle-over-cycle to gain a dozen new legislative chamber majorities and we are leading the effort to bring national attention and investment to our ballot level. State legislatures are the building blocks of our democracy and have the closest connections to Americans’ day-to-day lives. From protecting fundamental freedoms and voting rights to growing the middle class, the DLCC and state legislators are moving the Democratic agenda forward and shaping the future of this country.

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