What’s Happening With The North Carolina LGBT Law? Today Is The Big Stand-Off

The nation’s been closely watching North Carolina ever since the state passed a law prohibiting transgender residents from using the bathroom that corresponds to their gender identity. Since the Justice Department told the state to trash the bill, you may be wondering what’s happening with the North Carolina LGBT law. Well, a lot. North Carolina had until Monday to ditch the controversial bathroom bill, but instead, the state sued the federal government for its “baseless and blatant overreach.”

The Justice Department said last week that the legislation violates LGBT people’s civil rights protections, but McCrory claimed it’s “common-sense law.” The governor hinted Sunday that he planned to keep the bill despite the warning, saying: “It’s the federal government being a bully. It’s making law.”

Although he acknowledged that it would be the Justice Department’s place to forbid him from segregating bathrooms based on race, he thinks gender identity is much harder to define and therefore doesn’t deserve the same protections. The lawsuit alleges that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act (that prohibits discrimination based on sex, race, color, national origin, and religion) doesn’t pertain to transgender individuals. “If the United States desires a new protected class under Title VII, it must seek such action by the United States Congress,” the suit says.

2015 NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

In the letter the Justice Department sent to Governor McCrory last week, it warned that the federal government could file a lawsuit against North Carolina and the state could lose hundreds of millions in federal funds for its public schools and universities. However, the governor beat them to the lawsuit.

North Carolina could lose hundreds of millions in federal funds for its public schools and universities if it doesn’t kill the discriminatory bill.

The Republican leader feels passionately that people should use the bathroom corresponding to the gender on their birth certificate, blaming President Obama for America’s increasing progressiveness on transgender issues — McCrory’s carrying the bigoted torch for the whole nation. “This is no longer just a North Carolina issue,” the governor said on Fox News Sunday. “This is a basic change of norms that we’ve used for decades throughout the United States of America and the Obama administration is now trying to change that norm — again not just in North Carolina, but they’re ordering this to every company in the United States of America — starting tomorrow I assume, or Tuesday.”

The governor explained that he filed the lawsuit to ensure his state doesn’t lose the federal funding the Justice Department threatened to hold hostage while the battle unfolds. North Carolina House Speaker Tim Moore stood by the governor’s decision to keep the bill, telling NBC News: “We don’t ever want to lose any money, but we’re not going to get bullied by the Obama administration to take action prior to Monday’s date. That’s not how this works.”

So, what now? The Justice Department hasn’t responded to the lawsuit yet, but certainly will, potentially even filing another lawsuit of its own. Governor McCrory and his fellow state officials plan to stand up to their so-called “bully” no matter what the cost, tirelessly defending transphobia across the nation — a war no one asked them to wage.