12M enroll in health law Trump, GOP are trying to repeal

The Senate State Affairs Committee on Monday approved a bill to make changes to the 2011 voter ID law

The transgender "bathroom bill" would require people to use public bathrooms and restrooms that correspond with the sex on their birth certificate.

After a second day of sharp disagreement and impassioned debate, the Texas Senate on Wednesday gave final approval to the transgender bathroom bill, sending it to an uncertain reception in the House, where Speaker Joe Straus has said he isn't a fan and prefers to address other priorities.

Texas does, however, have a law against harassing, accosting or assaulting someone in a restroom, Houston state Senator John Whittier responded.

During a public hearing of the bill last week, the bill's sponsor, Sen.

Republicans hold an eight-vote advantage over Democrats on the Budget Committee, and if four GOP members oppose it, the bill could stall. Now that the bathroom bill has tentatively passed, he worries that could change.


Hundreds of conservative activists rallied outside the Capitol in sub-freezing weather to call on congressional leaders and Trump to abandon the GOP bill and fully repeal Obama's law. "So I don't think they would be over here unless they really do want to take input from folks", Corker said. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham), the primary sponsor of the bill, gave an emotional speech Tuesday in favor of the measure, insisting its goal was to ensure privacy in the state. It would undo that law's individual mandate, which requires most people to have coverage, by ending the tax penalty on those who don't.

The North Carolina Senate ignored warnings from business leaders this week, voting to advance the Republican-backed bill, SB 6, by a vote of 21-10.

"I'm afraid that if they vote for this bill, they're going to put the House majority at risk next year", he said during an interview with ABC's "This Week". The measure is awaiting House activity. By making it illegal for transgender people in Texas to be afforded access to facilities consistent with their identity, it opens them up to increased discrimination and harassment as they simply live their everyday lives.

"I believe that the blurring of gender - although I respect that people internalize something different - believe that, all of that blurring will lead to less rights for women", said Kolkhorst.

But he also said early Tuesday afternoon that no meeting of the Senate Education Committee has yet been scheduled to hear House Bill 520, which the House approved March 3 on a 56-39 vote. The organization, a statewide union for teachers, registered against the vote, but a representative did not testify before the Senate.

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