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Idaho Judge Blocks Transgender Law Barring Biological Males from Competing in Women's Sports


ABOVE: Idaho State Rep. Barbara Ehardt (R) appeared on the Thursday afternoon edition of CBN's Newswatch to talk about the Idaho law and how biological boys and men should not be allowed to compete with women. Newswatch is seen weekdays on the CBN News Channel. 

A federal judge on Monday temporarily blocked an Idaho law that prohibits transgender athletes from participating in women's sports. 

Back in March, Gov. Bradley Little (R-ID) signed the House Bill 500 (HB500) Fairness in Women's Sports Act, a law that restricts biological males from competing in women's sports.  

US District Judge David Nye said the law's ban on transgender athletes "stands in stark contrast to the policies of elite athletic bodies that regulate sports both nationally and globally." Nye indicated that the law "establishes a 'dispute' process that allows a currently undefined class of individuals to challenge a student's sex."

Nye said the plaintiffs who are suing Idaho "are likely to succeed in establishing" that the law is "unconstitutional as currently written."

Idaho's Fairness in Women's Sports Act highlights the "inherent differences between men and women" like bone structure and hormones which affects performance during sports. The biological differences between genders give men a distinct advantage over women when competing in sports.

"The Court recognizes that this decision is likely to be controversial," the judge said. He added that the "Constitution must always prevail."

"In making this determination, it is not just the constitutional rights of transgender girls and women athletes at issue but, as explained above, the constitutional rights of every girl and woman athlete in Idaho," Nye wrote.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit in April on behalf of Lindsay Hecox, a transgender athlete from Boise State University. Hecox plans on trying out for the university's cross country and track teams.

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CBN News previously reported that Madison Kenyon, a track athlete at Idaho State University filed a motion supporting the law.

She told CBN News it's "frustrating and discouraging" to lose against a transgender opponent that is a male.

"When I was racing in cross country and in track, I did compete against a male athlete, and both times I lost," she said. "Biologically, males are capable of so much more. When you're training at the collegiate level, putting everything out there and training as hard as you can then get beat by somebody that you can't really compete against. They will naturally hit levels of success in athletics that are higher than what I'm capable of as a female."

Kenyon explained that she got involved in the matter because she has personally experienced the unfairness of biological males competing against females.

"I have lost to a male and it's unfair. I got involved in this because I thought it was the best way for me to stand up for something that I believe in, to support women's sports, and to advocate for these opportunities that should be protected for us," she said. 

The Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a conservative Christian non-profit law firm said in a statement that athletes are "well familiar with the difference in strength and speed between comparably gifted and trained male and female athletes."

"Girls deserve to compete on a level playing field," said Alliance Defending Freedom attorney Christiana Holcomb. "Allowing males to compete in girls' sports diminishes women's athletic opportunities and destroys fair competition."

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