WAHSINGTON DC The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday, April sixth, a 12-year old transgender girl in West Virginia can continue to compete on female middle school track and cross-country teams.
The Mountain State adopted Save Women’s Sports Act in 2021 that banned transgender athletes from competing in female sports in middle schools, high schools and colleges.
The United States Supreme Court rejected the emergency motion from West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey to prevent a middle schooler, Becky Pepper-Jackson, from continuing to participate in track and cross country at her school. The vote was 7-2.
Pepper-Jackson is the center of a lawsuit challenging the W.Va. law.
The Attorney General said he's, "deeply dissapointed."
“This is a procedural setback, but we remain confident that when this case is ultimately determined on the merits, we will prevail,” Mr. Morrisey said. “We maintain our stance that this is a common sense law—we have a very strong case. It’s just basic fairness and common sense to not have biological males play in women’s sports.”
U.S. Judge Joseph Goodwin initially prevented the law from being enforced, allowing Pepper-Jackson to compete on the girls’ teams. Then the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit blocked the state from trying to remove Becky from the sports teams.
The case will now be considered on it’s merits in front of the Fourth Circuit.
Lambda Legal, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the ACLU of West
Virginia issued a joint statement Thursday.
“We are grateful that the Supreme Court today acknowledged that there was no emergency and that Becky should be allowed to continue to participate with her teammates on her middle school track team, which she has been doing without incident for three going on four seasons, as our challenge to West Virginia’s onerous trans youth sports ban makes its way through the courts. This was a baseless and cruel effort to keep Becky from where she
belongs–playing alongside her peers as a teammate and as a friend.”
President Biden on the same day proposed a federal rule change preventing schools and colleges from out right banning participation of transgender athletes in sports. Mr. Morrisey said the rule is the Biden Administration running roughshod over the Justice Department.
“This proposal from the Biden Administration to allow biological males to compete in girl’s and women’s sports is Washington overreach at its worst. Separating teams based on biological sex is a matter of basic fairness and common sense,” Attorney General Morrisey said in a statement Thursday.