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Smith urges Koster to join lawsuit opposing transgender bathroom rule


WASHINGTON – Attorney General Chris Koster should join 11 other states in suing the federal government over its transgender bathroom guidance, U.S. Rep. Jason Smith, R-Salem, wrote in a letter to Koster signed by the other five Republican members of Missouri’s Congressional delegation.

Koster has said he opposes the federal mandate and will file an amicus brief in the case of G.G. vs. Gloucester County School Board. But Smith says Koster hasn’t gone far enough.


“It is imperative that Attorney General Koster join in filing the 11- state federal lawsuit, he has already stated that the President was “wrong to dictate a national policy so quickly and unilaterally, now is the time to act,” Smith said in a statement about the letter.

Smith said that joining the lawsuit would be a “consistent approach,” in light of his support for the Gloucester case.

Smith said Koster should join the case that’s an infringement upon the state rights of Missouri to set its own education rules, while also criticizing the substance of the rule as unsafe for school children.

“The Obama Administration’s attempt to intimidate Missouri public schools by threatening to pull funding if they don’t comply with this ridiculous and unsafe new executive action is unconstitutional and outrageous,” he said. “Something must be done to protect children of our public schools across Missouri.”

The lawsuit filed includes Texas, Alabama, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Tennessee, Arizona, Maine, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Utah and Georgia and seeks to block the federal government from “implementing, applying or enforcing the new rules, regulations and guidance interpretations.”

Reps. Billy Long, Blaine Luetkemeyer, Ann Wagner, Sam Graves and Vicky Hartzler also signed Smith’s letter to Koster.

The bathroom rule has also affected the race for governor, for which Koster is a Democratic candidate. Republican candidate Peter Kinder has been especially forceful in his opposition to the rule and has led more than 100 state legislators to sign a petition opposing its implementation.