California Gov. Gavin Newsom has vetoed a bill that would have required judges to consider each parent's affirmation of a child's gender identity amid custody disputes, saying that the legislation could be used as a way to "diminish civil rights of vulnerable populations."
The governor said he appreciates the "passion and values" that led Democrat Assemblywoman Lori Wilson to introduce the bill and that he shares a "deep commitment to advancing the rights of transgender Californians, an effort that has guided my decisions through many decades in public office."
Of Newsom's decision, Wilson said, "As the mother of a trans child, it is jarring to know that TGI youth are at higher risk of depression, mental health crises, self-harm, and suicide than their cisgender peers," adding that her legislation would give California a way to take one step closer to building a safer, more dignified, and equitable world for TGI youth and their families."
Newsom, while vetoing the bill on Friday, said he supports the advancement of transgender rights in California but he would not support the bill because of efforts to change legal standards for a separate branch of government.
"I urge caution when the Executive and Legislative branches of state government attempt to dictate — in prescriptive terms that single out one characteristic — legal standards for the Judicial branch to apply," Newsom wrote in his veto letter.
California State Sen. Scott Wiener, who co-authored the bill with Wilson, said on X that Newsom's veto is a "tragedy for trans kids" who are living in fear of "right-wing politicians working to out them, deny them health care, ban them from sports & restrooms & erase their humanity," he said."
He added that Newsom had been a "staunch ally to the LGBTQ community," but his veto was a "mistake."
The governor vetoed two other bills Friday.
One would have banned driverless testing and operations of heavy-duty self-driving cars, while the other would have prohibited the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation from providing information to or responding to requests from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
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