Bathroom bill debate: What you need to know

Texas Sen. Paul Bettencourt R-Houston and Sen. Lois Kolkhorst R-Brenham take part as the Senate State Affairs Committee begins talks on Senate Bill 6 at the Texas Capitol on Tuesday March 7 in Austin. The transgender

Senate Bill 6 would force transgender people to use the bathroom that matches the sex listed on their birth certificate, and lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle shared fierce viewpoints.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., attempted to play down the severity of the GOP split after a private lunch attended by Pence, Price and some of the architects of the House bill, including House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas.

The Texas State Teachers Association also urged the House to reject the bill. But that vote, which will probably happen on Wednesday, will likely go along the same, mostly partisan lines - 21 for, 10 against.

"The Legislature shouldn't be in the business of discriminating against some of our most vulnerable Texans", said Sen.

"As it's written today, this bill in the House of Representatives can not pass the Senate".

"The real action will be in the Senate and what changes, if any, Mitch McConnell allows, in order to cover more people under Medicaid and then get the buy-in from more moderate Republican senators", Continetti said.

"I anticipate there probably would be agreement on the bill but again, I can't be 100 percent on it", says Sen.

Senate Bill 6, a legislative priority of Lt. Gov.




The bill's sponsor, Republican Senator Lois Kolkhorst, said that she was "standing up for those who want privacy and protection in the most intimate places".

"I think this bill is about discrimination against a certain group of our citizens, especially transgender people", Democratic state Senator Chuy Hinojosa.

Protesters chant as details of Senate Bill 6, dubbed the Texas Privacy Act, are outlined in Austin.

"I will tell you as a woman, this is not a joke", Kolkhorst said. House Speaker Joe Straus, a San Antonio Republican, has said he is "not a fan" of the bill and would rather focus on other issues.

"This was a retaliatory event", she said.

Texas Value is expected to rally in support of the bill from noon until 1 p.m. Tuesday.

No. 3 Senate leader John Thune, R-S.D., said he will propose devoting more of the GOP tax credit to lower-earning people.

"After hearing an outpouring of opposition to this bill during almost 20 hours of citizen testimony last week, it's outrageous that the Texas Senate would advance SB 6 to the House", Winterhof said.

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