AUSTIN, Texas (AP) – A North Carolina-style “bathroom bill” has cleared a first vote in Texas after 13 consecutive hours of public comment dominated by transgender-rights supporters who scolded the measure.
A Senate committee early Wednesday advanced the proposal that would require people to use public bathrooms that correspond with the sex on their birth certificate. The bill has drawn backlash from big businesses including Google and the NFL.
The 7-1 vote came nearly 21 hours after the start of the hearing that packed the Texas Capitol. Parents of transgender schoolchildren were among more than 400 people who signed up to give often emotional testimony.
Republicans pushing the bill say they’re trying to protect women’s privacy in bathrooms.
The proposal now goes to the full Senate but faces resistance in the House.