According to the signed bill, “Only female students, based on their sex, may participate in any team, sport, or athletic event designated as being for females, women, or girls.”
“This is a victory for girls’ sports in Iowa. No amount of talent, training or effort can make up for the natural physical advantages males have over females. It’s simply a reality of human biology,” Governor Reynolds said in a statement. “Forcing females to compete against males is the opposite of inclusivity and it’s absolutely unfair.”
The law extends to public schools, private schools, community colleges, and higher education institutions, as well as any colleges that are NCAA- or NAIA-affiliated, and is effective immediately.
Governor Reynolds called the matter a “fairness issue” for women’s sports careers.
“Girls have dreams and aspirations of earning a scholarship to help pay for college. Girls have dreams and aspirations of one day competing in the Olympics,” the governor said. “So it’s a fairness issue.”
Republican Party of Iowa Co-Chair Linda Upmeyer celebrated the legislation as a success for female athletes.
“Republicans in the legislature and Gov. Reynolds are leading and standing up for Iowa’s female athletes. This is inherently a fairness issue,” Upmeyer said. “Young girls should not be discouraged from participating, or succeeding, in athletics because competition is out of their ability to compete. Wokeness does not have a role in our schools or athletics.”
Of course, the left is up in arms over the new legislation. Democrat Senate Minority Leader Zach Wahls called the law “appalling.”
“She is showing once again that she’s more interested in scoring political points than caring about the impact of legislation on some of the most marginalized kids in our society,” Wahls said in a statement.