The Republican speaker of the Texas
House of Representatives recently cited suicide in explaining his
opposition to a bill that would limit transgender bathroom access.
Joe Straus made the comments in an
interview with The
The article describes a meeting between
Straus and a GOP senator looking for a compromise to the legislation
before the bill collapsed in May.
“I'm not a lawyer, but I am a Texan,”
Straus said. “I'm disgusted by all this. Tell the lieutenant
governor I don't want the suicide of a single Texan on my hands.”
According to a survey released in
December by the National Center for Transgender Equality, 40 percent
of transgender Americans have attempted suicide at some point.
Republican Lieutenant Governor Dan
Patrick has pushed for a North Carolina-style “bathroom bill” in
Texas that prohibits transgender people from using the bathroom of
their choice. Patrick controls the Senate.
Governor Greg Abbott, a Republican, has
called for a special legislative session to tackle 19 items,
including the so-called bathroom bill. The special session begins
In a statement released before
lawmakers adjourned in May, Apple CEO Tim Cook and Facebook founder
Mark Zuckerberg reiterated their opposition to the legislation and
called it bad for business.
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the
nation's largest LGBT rights advocate, criticized Abbott for
reigniting the controversial proposal.