Montana bars trans Congresswoman from House of Representatives debate sessions

Archive – Protest for trans rights – Europa Press/Contacto/Loredana Sangiuliano

Republican congressmen from the U.S. state of Montana have voted to ban Congresswoman Zooey Zephyr, one of the first transgender women in the state’s Congress, from participating in the debate on LGTBI+ policies by deeming her criticism of proposed measures disruptive to the order of the chamber.

Zephyr had strongly protested a proposed measure in the Republican-majority chamber that would prevent transgender minors in the state from accessing gender self-determination health care.

Criticizing the motion, Zephyr claimed that congressmen who voted for it would have »blood on their hands,» a comment that drew criticism from Republicans, who banned the Democrat from participating in the debate for a week.

Last Monday, a group of demonstrators stormed the chamber under the slogan »let her speak», a protest that resulted in seven arrests, according to the newspaper ‘The Hill’.

Now, the Republicans have deemed that Zephyr »actively participated in the disruption of the legal activities» of the chamber, and have voted to prevent him from participating in the rest of the sessions related to the proposed regulation. He will be allowed to vote, although he will have to do so electronically.

Zephyr, through a statement, has denounced the situation, which he has also described as a »disturbing attack on democracy»: »Although the Republican majority has withdrawn my ability to participate in the debate, I will remain steadfast in my commitment to my community. I will continue to make the difficult moral decisions necessary to defend the people who trusted me to represent them».

He has denounced that »in recent months, this legislature has relentlessly launched attacks against the LGTBI+ community,» and claimed that his comments were intended »to hold accountable those responsible» for this attack.


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