Montana Republicans deliberately misgender trans colleague while attempting to censure her

A contingent of Republican lawmakers in Montana, known as the Montana Freedom Caucus, purposefully misgendered a transgender colleague while calling for her to be censured.

The group posted a petition on Twitter Tuesday bearing the names of 21 lawmakers, arguing that Democratic Rep. Zooey Zephyr should face punishment “for trying to shame the Montana legislative body and by using inappropriate and uncalled-for language during a floor debate.”

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The petition referenced comments Zephyr made while speaking out against a bill that would ban gender-affirming youth care.

“It is disheartening that the Montana Freedom Caucus would stoop so low as to misgender me in their letter, further demonstrating their disregard for the dignity and humanity of transgender individuals,” Zephyr fired back in a statement Wednesday.

“Their call for ‘civility and respect’ is hypocritical given their actions.”


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Her initial comments came during a discussion surrounding Republican Gov. Greg Gianforte’s suggested amendments to the transgender medical care bill.

“If you vote yes on this bill and yes on these amendments, I hope the next time there’s an invocation, when you bow your heads in prayer, you see the blood on your hands,” Zephyr said during the meeting.

House Majority Leader Sue Vinton called the comment inappropriate, disrespectful and uncalled for. “We can debate matters civilly and with respect for each other.”

House Minority Leader Kim Abbott came to Zephyr’s defense, saying the misgendering of her colleague was “blatantly disrespectful and the farthest thing imaginable from the ‘commitment to civil discourse’ that these letter writers demand.”

The row exemplifies the larger battle raging across the U.S. as Democrats and Republicans in many states argue over laws affecting the transgender community.

In Montana, the governor’s amendments were approved by the House and Senate on Wednesday, and will now go to the governor for his signature.

With News Wire Services


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