Lifestyle

Transgenders score a win in Alaska; voters reject bathroom bill

Anchorage, Alaska, is set to become the first U.S. city to reject a bill barring transgender people from using the bathroom that matches their gender identity. With several hundred votes still to count, the repeal effort was losing 53-47 percent as of Monday. (Sara D. Davis/Getty Images)

Anchorage, Alaska, is set to become the first U.S. city to reject a bill barring transgender people from using the bathroom that matches their gender identity, ABC News reported.

What's the story?

Nearly 53 percent of voters cast their ballots against Proposition 1, which would have repealed part of a 2015 "anti-discrimination" ordinance that allowed transgenders to use the bathroom of their choice. If the proposition had passed, the law would have forced people to use the bathroom that matches their gender at birth.

Once the final tally is certified next week, the city will become the "first to defeat such an effort in a stand-alone ballot measure," Alex Morash, a National LGBTQ Task Force Action Fund spokesman, told Newsweek.

Voting ended April 3 — with repeal effort losing 53-47 percent as of Monday,  and nearly 78,000 votes counted — and only several hundred votes left to count, according to ABC News.

Jim and Kim Minnery and their group, Alaska Family Action, a pro-family public policy organization, filed the proposition.

"We're encouraged that 47 percent of the people in Anchorage didn't buy into the $1 million infusion that the outside LGBT activist groups poured into the city," said Jim Minnery, who conceded defeat.

What do opposers say about defeating the bill?

“Anchorage voters rejected fear and intimidation to affirm that everyone in our city should have the same fundamental dignity and protection under the law," said Lillian Lennon of Fair Anchorage, a local rights organization, in a statement. “As a transgender woman, this victory is deeply personal to me and to so many of us in the transgender community. It means voters saw past misleading tactics by opponents of transgender equality in order to treat people like me fairly."

Companies such as Wells Fargo, BP, and Visit Anchorage opposed the bill citing it could hurt the city financially.

"Just from a purely economic standpoint, it seems like a really bad idea," said John Kauffman, an Anchorage lawyer who campaigned against the bill.

One last thing…
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