While we were celebrating the New Hampshire Senate’s approval of a same-sex marriage bill in a 13-11 vote yesterday, there was some upsetting news that marred the joy: Those same senators shot down an anti-discrimination bill that would have protected transgender folks.
And it was unanimous.
Voting 24-0, the entire Senate nixed the bill, which was set to add sexuality identity as a protected class right up there with race, religion, and yes, even sexual orientation. (A Senate committee recommended last week 5-0 to kill the bill.)
What’s being blamed for the bill’s defeat? It’s nickname: “the bathroom bill.” It’s the same nickname we’ve seen attached to similar legislation in other states, where fearmongering about men going in to women’s bathrooms and praying on young children was enough to sway opinions. Not only did opponents scream the nickname, but so did the media, which Democrats say didn’t help matters.
Now, if someone could explain to us why the bill received zero votes, even though Democrats supported it, and folks like Sen. Martha Fuller Clark (D) co-sponsored it.
This, after the House’s hard-fought battle to pass the bill, which was approved by a single vote in a 188-187 decision on April 8.
Without New Hampshire, it leaves the tally of states with transgender protections at 13, plus Washington D.C.