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Gov. Noem on Biden's Title IX reinterpretation: 'Mr. President, we'll see you in court'

“South Dakota will continue to defend basic fairness so that our girls can compete and achieve," Noem said

June 2, 2022 3:45pm

Updated: June 2, 2022 5:50pm

South Dakota’s Republican Gov. Kristi Noem on Thursday pledged to stand up to the Biden administration’s threats to defund lunch programs for schools that do not adopt the president’s interpretation of Title IX – a move which conservatives have celebrated as a defense of women’s sports.

“President Biden is holding lunch money for poor Americans hostage in pursuit of his radical agenda,” Noem said in a statement. “He is insisting that we allow biological males to compete in girls’ sports or else lose funding for SNAP and school lunch programs.”

“South Dakota will continue to defend basic fairness so that our girls can compete and achieve. I would remind President Biden that we have defeated him in litigation before and are ready to do so again.”

“Mr. President, we’ll see you in court,” the conservative governor warned.

Noem’s comments came just days after the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) announced that it will interpret “the prohibition on discrimination based on sex found in Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 … to include discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.”

Under the progressive interpretation of the federal law, schools that do not allow biological males to participate in women’s sports could stand accused of discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.

“Under the leadership of the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA and FNS are issuing this interpretation to help ensure its programs are open, accessible and help promote food and nutrition security, regardless of demographics,” the USDA said.

“This action is in line with President Biden’s Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation, and is consistent with the Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton County, in which the Court held that the prohibition on sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 extends to discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity,” the agency said in a statement.

Furthermore, state and local governments will be required to “investigate allegations of discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation,” the USDA said, and these organizations must update their policies and signage to “include prohibitions against discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation.”