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Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a veto of a bill that would have required judges to consider a parent’s affirmation of their children’s gender identity while considering custody. 

The Sept. 22 announcement said that Newsom wanted to protect judicial independence.

“I urge caution when the Executive and Legislative branches of state government attempt to dictate—in prescriptive terms that single out one characteristic—legal standards for the Judicial branch to apply. Other-minded elected officials, in California and other states, could very well use this strategy to diminish the civil rights of vulnerable communities,” his announcement said.

The announcement continued to say that a court can already consider the parent’s affirmation of the child’s gender identity while considering what is best for the child’s health, safety and welfare.

Assemblymember Lori Wilson (D-Suisun City), the author of Assembly Bill 957, expressed disappointment in the veto. 

“My intent with this bill was to give (transgender children) a voice, particularly in the family court system where a non-affirming parent could have a detrimental impact on the mental health and well-being of a child. Whether the roadblock comes from the opposition or even a supporter, it only hardens my resolve. I’m far from done, this fight is personal!” Wilson said in her written statement.

The bill passed the Sept. 8 Assembly 61-16, and passed the Senate 30-9. The votes were along party lines. Each of the Inland Empire’s Democrat representatives voted to pass the bill, and each of the area’s Republican representatives voted against it.

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