This week Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds issued support for banning men from women’s sports in Iowa. Unfortunately, in today’s world, this kind of legislative action is needed if we want to protect women, women’s sports, opportunities for women, scholarships and future plans for women.
No doubt Reynolds is following in the footsteps of several other states who have proposed such efforts including five states that have succeeded in forwarding such a ban. While such sentiments make for a good headline, especially amongst the conservative base in Iowa, in lead up to Reynolds re-election efforts in 2022, one has to wonder why in the final days of the legislative session suddenly this has become a priority for the governor and why she ignored similar legislative efforts earlier this year.
On January 22, 2021, Rep. Sandy Salmon (R-Black Hawk) introduced HF184, a bill to ban men from participating in women’s sports and vice versa. HF184 was referred to the education committee but died having never received a subcommittee. Where was the governor’s support for this bill? Where was the governor’s support for protecting women’s sports at this time?
On the Senate side, while not addressing sports specifically but similar in nature, Sen. Jim Carlin (R-Woodbury), now a US Senate candidate, introduced SF224, a bill to ban men from the women’s bathrooms and women from men’s bathroom in elementary and secondary public schools and nonpublic schools. SF224 passed the subcommittee on Feb. 9, 2021, but ultimately died as the education committee refused to take up the bill. Once again, back in February, where was the governor’s support?
Obviously, the governor had other priorities early on with pushing school choice, admirable, but ultimately died, Planned Parenthood-supported over the counter birth control, also died, and broadband internet, which passed.
Perhaps if the governor had put her support behind Salmon and Carlin’s bills, she could be leading the nation with genuine headlines as a defender of women and conservatives. However, with this late-in-the-game, feel-good-sentiment, it simply appears that Reynolds is desperately looking for support from conservatives for her election next year. Voters tend to have a short memory or simply roll with the headlines, but for those paying close attention, this is a disingenuous ploy at trying to secure her position of power.