The Maryland House of Delegates has approved a bill banning discrimination against transgender people.
The House did not change the bill that was already passed by the Senate this session, though Republicans tried in vain today to exempt public restrooms from the discrimination regulations.
GOP House leader Nick Kipke was one of many Republicans who believe the law would allow men pretending to be women to go into public restrooms and assault women and girls. "You know these people sometime get their kicks by hanging out in places like that," he said.
The focus on restrooms brought a fiery response from Montgomery County Democrat and gubernatorial candidate Heather Mizeur, who chastised opponents for being obsessed with the restroom issue.
"Do you actually think that somebody who was born in a body that does not align with their gender identity, and are going through the suffering and hate that is heaped upon them on this country for presenting who they really feel they are, is really going to go into a bathroom and expose themselves?" she asked.
The measure now heads to Gov. Martin O'Malley, who is expected to sign it.