EXCLUSIVE: Following Caitlyn Jenner’s comments against transgender athletes competing in women’s sports teams, California Governor Gavin Newsom highlighted his support for transgender people.
A Newsom spokesperson told Fox News that the Democratic governor believes that the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause “applies to all Americans – regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.”
The spokesperson noted that the governor wants to ensure that “trans Californians are fully recognized in accordance with their gender identity while interacting with public services,” but refrained from speaking directly to participating trans athletes. to sports.
California already allows students to “participate in activities consistent with their gender identity”, according to the spokeswoman and added that the state “will not back down on these issues”.
The issue of transgender athletes was put on the map again on Saturday by Jenner, who is running as a Republican to topple Newsom, in the upcoming recall election.
Jenner, a former Olympian who turned out to be transgender in 2015, told TMZ in an interview that she opposes allowing transgender athletes who were born male to compete in female sports teams.
“It’s a matter of fairness, which is why I oppose biological trans boys who participate in female sports at school,” Jenner said. “It’s just not fair, and we need to protect girls’ sports in our schools.”
Jenner’s remarks, 71, come after Florida lawmakers passed a law banning transgender women and girls from participating in women’s sports teams. Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis said last week he would sign the bill.
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Similar bills have been passed in recent months in Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi, while South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, also a Republican, issued an executive order on the matter.
Newsom’s campaign team declined to comment on a Democratic strategist who believes Jenner’s candidacy could prove to be a big win for Newsom.
In a Vanity Fair article published Wednesday, California Democratic agent Michael Trujillo supported the governor’s formulation of the recall as an alleged “Republican takeover” and “very misleading.”
He also mocked Jenner’s entry into the race and accused her of repeating Trump’s talking points.
“If you are Team Newsom, this is the gift that keeps coming,” Trujillo said.
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Jenner’s comments to TMZ about the participation of transgender boys in women’s sports angered the LGBTQ community.
Equality California, an LGBTQ civil rights organization, accused Jenner of being willing to “sacrifice the health and well-being” of transgender children to win votes.
On Tuesday, Jenner posted her first video of the crowded recall campaign to replace Newsom. The video highlights the mid-century ‘American dream’ in California before blaming politicians for the state’s decline.
Jenner enters a field of candidates that includes 2018 gubernatorial candidate John Cox, former San Diego Mayor Kevin Falconer and former Congressman Doug Ose.
California’s recall election format gives candidates with high profile, but who may not have made it through a more traditional primary process, a greater chance of success. If Newsom is removed from office, his replacement would only be in office for a short time before a regular election for California governor in 2022.
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Adam Shaw and Brooke Singman of Fox News and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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