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Louisianas Murrill files lawsuit to protect Title IX, female athletes

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(The Center Square) — Louisiana Attorney General Liz Murrill announced Monday she is leading a lawsuit with Mississippi, Montana and Idaho to fight the Biden Administration’s new Title IX rules.

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court of Western Louisiana, seeks the overturn of the rules on constitutional grounds, an injunction preventing the administration from enforcing Title IX “in accordance with erroneous interpretation” in the rule and attorney fees and court costs.

The lawsuit says the rule is a “a naked attempt to strong-arm our schools into molding our children in the current federal government’s preferred image of how a child should think, act and speak. The Final Rule is an affront to the dignity of families and school administrators everywhere and is nowhere close to legal.”

The lawsuit also says the new rule will “gut the very essence of Title IX and destroy decades of advances in equal educational opportunities, especially for women and girls.”

“With the stroke of a pen and 400 pages of rules written by would-be lawmakers in Washington, D.C. conference rooms, the DOE published Title IX regulations intended to remake American societal norms through classrooms, lunchrooms, bathrooms and locker rooms of American schools,” Murrill said at a Monday news conference with Gov. Jeff Landry. “Make no mistake: These rules eviscerate Title IX. They are entirely contrary to what Title IX was intended to achieve and what we have implemented and intended Title IX to mean and protect for 50 years.

“Title IX was intended to prevent pervasive discrimination against biological women.”

She also said the federal government’s overreach was like a degree and dimension “like no other.”

“Whatever lever, whatever power the governor’s office has or the statutes vest in me, we will 100% be standing behind this Legislature, this attorney general and behind the BESE board because we do not intend to comply,” Landry said. “We are not going to pretend there is some kind of sexual category other than the ones the Almighty has set forth. There’s only two of them. We look forward to this fight because this fight is right.”

Louisiana Superintendent of Education Cade Brumley, who was flanked by some members of the Louisiana State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, said that this was a “line in the sand issue and a bridge too far for the state of Louisiana” and voiced his support for the lawsuit.

Title IX prohibits educational institutions that receive federal funds from discriminating on the basis of sex in both educational programs and activities.

The new rules finalized by the Department of Education and which are supposed to go into effect Aug. 1. expand the definition of sex discrimination to include gender identity and pregnancy, but the agency didn’t issue any rules relating to transgender athletes. Among the changes include a prohibition on single-sex bathroom and locker rooms and requirements that a school use pronouns based on a student’s preferred gender identity.