Sarah Kate Purnell
On Thursday evening, the controversial “bathroom bill”, HB2, was repealed and replaced by HB142.
Gov. Cooper officially signed the replacement into law hours after the General Assembly approved it. The law passed in the NC House 70-48, but many are not pleased.
The “new” HB2 eliminates the requirement that individuals must use the bathroom matching their birth certificate, however, the bill now bans local non-discriminatory ordinances until December 1, 2020.
“In a perfect world, with a good General Assembly, we would have repealed House Bill 2 fully today and added full statewide protections for LGBT North Carolinians,” Cooper said at a news conference, according to the News & Observer. “Unfortunately our supermajority Republican legislature will not pass these protections. But this is an important goal that I will keep fighting for.”
The signing of the repeal and replacement law on Thursday came after the NCAA stated that without a repeal of HB2, it would not allow North Carolina to hold any championship games through 2022.
“It was a very measured approach,” House Speaker Tim Moore told reporters at the News & Observer. “I think this bill, as written, is also something that is very defensible in court. I think it’s something the public supports. No one is 100 percent happy, but I would say I’m 95 percent happy.”
Rep. Darren Jackson (D-39) shared his support for the bill. Rep. Jackson stated he felt the bill would allow transgender individuals to use the bathrooms of their choice freely and without fear.
“This is not the deal I would have written, but it’s the best deal we could get.” Rep. Jackson stated according to the News & Observer.
Many Democrats opposed the repeal stating that it did not take enough measures in eliminating discrimination against LGBT+ individuals.
“This is not a repeal of HB 2. Instead, they’re reinforcing the worst aspects of the law,” James Esseks, director of the American Civil Liberties Union LGBT Project, said in the statement according to NBCNews. “North Carolina lawmakers should be ashamed of this backroom deal that continues to play politics with the lives of LGBT North Carolinians.”
The ACLU additionally tweeted their disapproval of the repeal and asked that the NCAA stand with transgender individuals against discrimination and for a full repeal.
“We will continue to fight against retaliatory voter suppression, anti-worker legislation, and any backroom efforts to enshrine discrimination in our laws.” NC NAACP President Rev. William Barber stated prior to the bill’s passing, NC Policy Watch reported. “Above all, any moratorium on civil rights is not a compromise, it is a contradiction with the principle of equal protection under the law and our moral values. We call on all those who stand for justice to vote no on compromise and pass a clean, full repeal of HB2.”