Sen. Lee Bright introduces 'bathroom bill' to SC Senate

Published: Apr. 6, 2016 at 7:47 PM EDT|Updated: Apr. 6, 2016 at 10:21 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - An Upstate senator has introduced a bill largely mirroring North Carolina's controversial law blocking local governments from passing anti-discrimination ordinances covering the use of public bathrooms by gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals.

Sen. Lee Bright brought S. 1203 to the Senate floor on Wednesday, which is says is essentially the same bill as North Carolina's HB2.

"I've about had enough of this," Bright said. "I mean, years ago we kept talking about tolerance, tolerance, and tolerance, and now they want men who claim to be women to be able to go into bathrooms with children. And you got corporations who say this is okay."

Bright's bill would require public bathrooms be used as deemed by "biological sex."

Gov. Nikki Haley, meanwhile, says a state law passed back in 1999 covers the parameters in Bright's bill.

"What I will tell you is in South Carolina, we are blessed because we don't have to mandate respect or kindness or responsibility in this state," Haley said. "And so I'll tell you that law has worked perfectly. I don't know of any example that we've had a problem on and South Carolina is going to continue to focus on ethics and on roads and on jobs and on all of those things because we think we've got that part covered."

The North Carolina law was passed after the City of Charlotte passed an ordinance giving protection to transgender men and women and allow them to use the bathrooms of the gender they identify as. Weeks later, the North Carolina legislature passed HB2, largely overturning that ordinance and others like it in the state.

The law's passage brewed a firestorm of controversy as large companies, such as PayPal, have pledged to pull business out of the state in response.

Several lawsuits have already been filed against the state, challenging the Constitutionality of such measures.

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