An Idaho district judge blocked a law on Tuesday that protects minors from taking sex change drugs and undergoing sex-mutilating procedures.
Boise U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill issued a preliminary injunction blocking House Bill 71, which was signed into law in April of 2023 and was set to go into effect in January of 2024. Winmill, a Clinton appointee, claimed in his order that parents have the right to allow their children to undergo sex change procedures and take sex change hormones under the Equal Protection and Due Process clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
“Transgender children should receive equal treatment under the law. Parents should have the right to make the most fundamental decisions about how to care for their children. As it turns out, case law applying the Fourteenth Amendment tracks with our intuition. Time and again, these cases illustrate that the Fourteenth Amendment’s primary role is to protect disfavored minorities and preserve our fundamental rights from legislative overreach,” Winmill wrote.
“That was true for newly freed slaves following the civil war. It was true in the 20th Century for women, people of color, inter-racial couples, and individuals seeking access to contraception. And it is no less true for transgender children and their parents in the 21st Century,” he continued.
Winmill additionally claimed in his order that the outlawed sex change hormones and surgeries for minors are “safe, effective, and medically necessary for some adolescents” — a disputed claim touted by major left-leaning medical associations and the Biden administration.
The lawsuit was brought by “two transgender minors and their parents,” according to the order. The plaintiffs allege that the state’s prohibition on puberty blockers, hormones, and other sex change procedures for minors violates the Equal Protection Clause and the Due Process Clause. The plaintiffs asked the court to enjoin the state from enforcing the law during litigation.
“We’re thankful the court saw the danger this law represented to our clients and we’re determined to fight this ban until Idaho is a safe place to raise every family,” Li Nowlin-Sohl of the American Civil Liberties Union, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said in a statement, according to NBC News.
Idaho Attorney General Raúl Labrador issued a statement slamming the ruling and warning that “history will not look kindly at this decision.” Labrador also said the state is working to immediately appeal the decision.
“The federal judiciary once endorsed the eugenics movement and forced sterilization of intellectually disabled people. Similarly, Judge Winmill’s ruling places children at risk of irreversible harm,” he said. “History will not look kindly at this decision. We are taking immediate action to appeal this decision and are confident that correction will come. I will never stop fighting for and protecting our most vulnerable children.”
The case is Poe v. Labrador, No. 1:23-cv-269 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho.