Attorney General Doug Peterson has written the Departments of Education and Justice, objecting to new transgender guidelines.
Federal officials have stated schools must let transgender individuals use the bathroom of their choice or face loss of federal money.
Attorney General Doug Peterson makes two objections: that the rule could traumatize sexual assault victims and that it overreaches federal authority.
“One is very real with the victims that we deal with. One has a real face to it. The other one is a legal analysis. On a lot of ways they are different,” Peterson tells Nebraska Radio Network.
Peterson calls the proposed guidelines ill-conceived. He charges the federal government has ignored the concerns of sexual assault victims. Peterson says he stressed that point in his protest letter for a reason.
“Day in, day out we’re dealing with that first one and that’s victims of sexual assault being re-traumatized if they have to use these facilities with people of the opposite sex in their facilities,” Peterson says.
Peterson says though the federal government claims to be extending the protections embedded in Title IX, that law contains specific regulations that authorizes schools to have separate facilities for boys and girls; both restrooms and locker rooms.
The attorney general doesn’t expect the federal government to back down. He expects the issue to go to court.
Peterson has the backing of Governor Pete Ricketts.
“I support the Attorney General 100%,” Ricketts tells Nebraska Radio Network. “What we see here is another example of the Obama Administration vastly overreaching their authority.”
Ricketts says the presidential essentially issued his opinion when his administration issued the guidelines. The governor claims they have no force of law and are way out of line. He says the issue should be decided by the states and local school districts.
Ricketts says Nebraska will fight the guidelines “tooth and nail.”
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [1 min.]