Transgender sports bill wins critical second reading vote

Supporters of SB 15 sat in the House gallery to see if the legislation known as the Save Women's Sports bill would make it to a vote.

"Our young women deserve to compete on a level playing field, it is not fair that young women are watching their records get broken, accolades taken and scholarships awarded not to other women, but to biological men. This Bill is about fairness," said State Representative Valoree Swanson (R - Spring).

Initially, Rep. Sawanson wasn't able to finish her opening statement before the first challenge was made.

"I raise a point of order against further consideration of Senate Bill 15 under Rule eight, Section 1A on the ground that the caption fails to give reasonable notice of the subject of the Bill," said State Rep Erin Zwiener (D - Kyle).

The challenge by Rep. Zwiener failed, but it was only the first of many made by several Democrats who tried to kill the bill.

SB 15 prohibits college athletes from competing on a team opposite to their biological sex. It does allow females to play on a men's team if their school does not offer a women's team. 

Supporters of SB 15 knew a floor fight would happen, and among those to attend was Kassidy Comer, who played women’s basketball for Midwestern State University.

"The message is that we are trying to protect women," said Comer. "We're not trying to hurt these people. They're already able to play sports because of their biological sex. If they choose to do so, then all the better for them. But we are trying to protect women who are biologically different from the men who are trying to play with us."

In the debate, Democrats like Cedar Park Representative John Bucy questioned the needed for the legislation.

"This isn't happening in Texas or the Texas legislature," said Rep. Bucy. "We need to solve the problems of Texas. Two, I don't think trans athletes in sports is a problem."

That statement brought a quick exchange with State Rep. Jeff Leach (R - Plano) about how to explain the issue to their daughters when a transgender player is able to take their position on their team.

"To you, is it fair?" asked Leach. "Is it fair for a biological male to compete against a biological female?"

Bucy offered this answer.

"I think if they are trans, you're talking about a trans woman competing against," said Bucy.

That answer had Leach restating his same question.

"Is it fair for a biological male to compete against a biological female?"

Bucy’s response was essentially the same.

"I think it is fair for a trans woman to compete, in women's sports."


An amendment was offered to exempt intramural sports from the Bill which would allow transgender students play on club sports and other competitive campus activities. The amendment was rejected.

SB 15 won on a vote of 93 to 39. It will have to clear one more House vote. Then the Senate will also have to sign off on some minor changes. If the bill is eventually signed by the governor it’s expected to spark a federal fight. T

he Biden administration is trying to amend Title IX to allow athletes compete on a sports team based on the gender they identify with.