Culture warfare continued in Frankfort as lawmakers return for the final two days of the legislative session on Wednesday, wasting little time in working to override vetos from Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear.
At the top of the veto override list was SB 150, which would ban gender-affirming care for minors, block teachers from using a student’s preferred pronouns, require school districts to form bathroom policies based on biological sex, and limit discussion about LGBTQ issues in K-12 sexual education classes.
The state Senate moved first overriding Beshear’s veto and putting the bill back into play. The House took receipt of the bill Wednesday afternoon, also overriding the governor’s veto.
“In their so-called attempt to protect children, this legislature has sentenced many to death,” said Rebecca Blankenship, Kentucky’s first openly trans-elected official and the Executive Director of Ban Conversion Therapy Kentucky. “The LGBT community will work hard to care for one another through this crisis as we have through many before. In the end, we will survive, and we will prevail.”
Hundreds, including many students, flooded the Capitol grounds on Wednesday as lawmakers returned for the 2023 regular legislative session.
“Kentucky children will die because the Republican majority chose to override this veto. This bill risks the lives and wellbeing of some of our Commonwealth’s most vulnerable children,” said Kentucky Democratic Party Chair Colmon Elridge. “Contrary to what Republicans claim, this strips away the rights of parents to make choices in the best interests of their child. I find it horrific that the GOP majority is spending limited time and our resources creating a climate of fear for LGBTQ children. This law will cost lives. Republicans should be ashamed of themselves, passing this bill at the last minute with so little transparency and just weeks after one of their colleagues lost her son. Kentuckians deserve better from their elected officials.”
The issue is being primed for the upcoming governor’s race, with Beshear vetoing the bill and several top contenders for the GOP gubernatorial nomination criticizing the legislation.