HELENA — The Montana House of Representatives and Senate both approved the controversial House Bill 112 Thursday afternoon after a long road bouncing between houses. The bill would bar transgender women from competing in women’s sports.
During its third debate on the House Floor, Rep. John Fuller, R-Whitefish, urged passage of the bill, even if it’s possible it will face legal challenges. Fuller is the bill’s sponsor.
“If we are claimed to be in violation of Title IX, that the courts will decide, which is the Montana way,” Fuller said. “I urge a green vote.”
The bill passed the house 60-39 and the Senate 27-23, both mostly along party lines.
Beyond legal challenges, the bill also could prevent the NCAA from holding championships in Montana, costing Missoula and Bozeman tens of millions of dollars in revenue. The association released a statement earlier this month decrying bills like HB 112.
Kansas Democratic Governor Laura Kelly vetoed a similar bill Thursday, saying “Kansas is an inclusive state and our laws should reflect our values.”
The bill now has to pass both the House and the Senate once more before going to the Governor.