If At First You Don’t Succeedby
State Rep. Wayne Christian, R-Center, just won’t give it a rest. But at least his continuing crusade to use the state budget to force his version of “traditional values” onto college campuses has given more credence to our earlier post about his true intentions — and has exposed the far-right legislator as being out of touch and largely uninformed about his own cause.
First, a little background. During the budget debate in the recently concluded regular session of the Texas Legislature, Christian successfully added an amendment that mandated that state universities with gender and sexuality centers (which serve women and the LGBTQ communities) spend an equal amount of funding on centers that promote “traditional and family values.”
The amendment was stripped from the final version of the budget. But on a separate fiscal matters bill, Christian took another stab at it, offering a revised version of the amendment flat out banning gender and sexuality centers from all state campuses. It was one of several controversial amendments that legislators pulled down in order to get fiscal matters done before the end of the regular session.
Not one to let the opportunity for a good culture war battle go to waste, Christian last night tried again to add the second version of the amendment as the House was considering a critical fiscal matters bill.
What followed was a contentious exchange that almost derailed the entire bill and the special legislative session along with it.
Here are the highlights:
- Christian is clearly unaware what gender identity means. He could not offer an answer when he was asked what his gender identity is.
- Christian did not realize his amendment could also apply to private universities that receive public funds.
- And shockingly, Christian was unaware his amendment could unintentionally outlaw any group or club with a gender identity, including, for example, fraternities and all-male Bible study groups.
Christian ultimately pulled the amendment down when a point of order brought by state Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer, D-San Antonio, threatened to kill the entire bill. That prompted Christian to return to the microphone to complain:
“I pray for the day when we actually can discuss things and bring those walls of prejudice down.”
We’re right there with you, Rep. Christian. We’re right there with you.