A transgender lawmaker in Montana was censured Thursday after she was accused of presenting a “hate-filled testimony” while debating a bill that would ban transgender medical care for minors.
State Rep. Zooey Zephyr, a Democrat, had a message for those who voted in favor of the bill banning transgender medical care for minors.
“The only thing I will say, is if you vote yes on this bill and yes on these amendments, I hope the next time there’s an invocation when you bow your heads in prayer, you see the blood on your hands,” Zephyr said referencing the body's opening prayer.
Republican Speaker Matt Regier then refused to acknowledge Zephyr when she wanted to express her opinion on a bill aiming to put a binary definition of male and female into the state code.
“It is up to me to maintain decorum here on the House floor, to protect the dignity and integrity,” Regier said. “And any representative that I don’t feel can do that will not be recognized.”
Regier said that the decision to not allow Zephyr to speak came after “multiple discussions” with other lawmakers, adding that there have been similar problems.
Montana Freedom Caucus member Rep. Caleb Hinkle, one of the individuals who demanded the censure, said that “Hate-filled testimony has no place on the House floor.”