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Transgender sports bill passes Senate, heads to the Governor

A bill to require public grade school and high school athletes to compete in sports according to their birth gender is now on its way to Governor Burgum’s desk.

The measure – worked out in a conference committee – includes a study of the issue.

The conference committee’s version of HB 1298 had passed the House earlier this week.

Sen. JoNell Bakke (D-Grand Forks) said this is a measure to address a problem that doesn’t exist.

"We are interfering in a personal issue between a young adult, their parents, their doctor and their God," Bakke said. "It is none of our business."

Sen. Janne Myrdal (R-Edinburg) argued it is a measure to protect girls' sports.

"All we're asking is protecting girls, that they play sports on an even playing field," Myrdal said. "Nobody's banning anything here. Nobody's taking any person's rights away. We're protecting rights."

The measure passed the Senate 27 to 20.

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