More than a dozen states on Wednesday asked a federal judge in Texas to block initiatives by the Obama administration designed to protect the rights of transgender individuals to use the bathroom of their choice, among other LGBT anti-discrimination provisions. The move came one day after the administration sued in North Carolina to block that state’s “bathroom bill” that was designed to thwart the administration’s efforts.
That the lawsuit originated in Texas is no coincidence, as two earlier legal efforts there led to injunctions against Obama’s immigration directives and the “persuader rule” by the Department of Labor (DOL) that places new restrictions on employers during union organizing efforts. In the case of the immigration injunction, it became permanent when the Supreme Court tied 4-to-4 upon review. The “persuader rule” injunction is still being fought out.
The Texas lawsuit joins scores of others across the nation that arose largely in response to a directive in May from the departments of Justice and Education mandating the students be allowed to choose the bathroom that corresponds to their self-perceived gender identity rather than to their gender of birth.