Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has said he is against transgender females participating in girls and women’s sports during an appearance on CNN on Saturday.
Kennedy, 69, cited the hard work that women have had to put in over the past 30 years to develop their field as he elaborated on his opinion.
‘I am against people participating in women’s sports who are biologically male,’ the Democratic presidential candidate said. ‘I think women have worked too hard to develop women’s sports over the past 30 years. I watched it happen, and I don’t think that’s fair.’
The issue of biological males in sports has come to the fore in recent years amid the controversy surrounding NCAA swimmer Lia Thomas, who was born male but competed as a women – and other transgender athletes competing in women’s sports.
Earlier this week Lia Thomas accused her former teammates of supporting her transition – but not her ability to compete as a woman.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has voiced his opposition to biological males participating in female sports
In 2020, the Robert F Kennedy Human Rights organization, which is run by Kennedy’s sister Kerry, demanded that Harry Potter author JK Rowling return an award she received from the group in 2019 for her work with the children’s charity Lumos of the writer’s views on transgender issues.
Rowling said receiving the honor was ‘one of the highest honors I’ve ever been given… Robert Kennedy embodied everything I most admire in a human being.’
Kerry Kennedy said in a statement that she felt Rowling’s comments on the trans community were ‘deeply troubling.’
This week, Kerry Kennedy issued a statement distancing her organization from her brother’s presidential bid.
‘I love my brother Bobby, but I do not share or endorse his opinions on many issues, including the COVID pandemic, vaccinations, and the role of social media platforms in policing false information. It is also important to note that Bobby’s views are not reflected in or influence the mission or work of our organization,’ she said.
Lia Thomas is pictured with her former competitor, Riley Gaines, at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships last year
Thomas, who became the first transgender athlete to win a division one NCAA national championship last year, called out her fellow University of Pennsylvania swimmers for ‘half support’ that was hidden behind the idea of feminism to ‘push transphobic beliefs.’
She made the accusation on the ‘Dear Schuyler’ podcast hosted by Schuyler Bailar, the first openly transgender NCAA swimmer.
The former collegiate swimmer, who swam on Penn’s men’s team, but joined the women’s team after her transition, said she believed that rather than be excluded from sports, trans women should be ‘celebrated’ for their accomplishments.
Thomas then went on to say that critics of transgender athletes in sports are ‘policing women’s bodies,’ comparing the push to exclude transgender female athletes from sports to historic efforts to exclude black women from competing in women’s sports.
‘They’re using the guise of feminism to sort of push transphobic beliefs,’ she said.
Currently, twenty-one states have banned transgender females from participating in girls and women’s sports, and Kennedy Jr. wants to see that number rise further still.
Last week, the Protection of Women and Girls in Sports Act was passed by the House in a 219-203 vote. The law specifically aims to prevent biological males from competing as transgender athletes in female sports at schools across the country.
The bill faced opposition from Democrats, who have accused Republicans of ‘bullying’ transgender students by calling up the bill.
The issue was split along party lines with all the ‘yes’ votes for the bill coming from Republicans, while all the ‘no’ votes came from Democrats.
President Biden has also stated that he would veto the bill if it were to arrive on his desk.
In the Senate, similar legislation was blocked by a Democrat, which aimed to prevent biological males from competing as transgender athletes on girls’ and women’s sports teams at schools and universities.
Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville, who was previously a head football coach at the University of Mississippi and Auburn University, noted the importance of Title IX in giving girls and women opportunities in sports.
ABC News edited anti-vaxx comments made by Democratic presidential hopeful Robert F. Kennedy Jr. out of an interview that aired Thursday night
On Friday, ABC News was accusing of editing anti-vax comments made by Kennedy Jr. out of an interview that aired Thursday night.
Kennedy officially launched his longshot presidential bid last week from Boston, taking on Democratic President Joe Biden.
For more than a decade Kennedy has become one of the country’s most prominent anti-vaxxers – falsely linking jabs to autism.
‘We should note that during our conversation, Kennedy made false claims about the COVID-19 vaccines,’ anchor Linsey Davis said when the interview aired. ‘We’ve used our editorial judgment in not including extended portions of that exchange in our interview.’
‘Data shows that the COVID-19 vaccine has prevented millions of hospitalizations and deaths from the disease,’ Davis continued. ‘He also made misleading claims about the relationship between vaccination and autism.’
The anchor then pointed to the research that shows that vaccines and the ingredients in vaccines are not what’s causing autism in children, noting multiple studies that involve more than a million pediatric patients that are endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics and Autism Speaks.
Despite Kennedy’s controversial viewpoints, a Fox News Channel poll released Wednesday showed the Democratic hopeful earning 19 percent of the Democratic primary vote.
Another 9 percent said they’d vote for self-help guru Marianne Williamson, who also ran for the Democratic nomination in 2020.
Biden – who made his reelection bid official on Tuesday – received 62 percent from Democratic primary voters, the poll found.
The Democratic National Committee is not expected to sponsor primary debates against Biden, which is typical when an incumbent in the White House is running.
Kennedy isn’t the first member of his family to challenge a sitting president.
The late Sen. Ted Kennedy took on President Jimmy Carter for the Democratic nomination in 1980.
Carter was plagued by low approval ratings and a sluggish economy.
Biden’s approval rating, according to the Real Clear Politics polling average, sits at 42.9 percent.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. speaks at an event where he announced his run for president on Wednesday, April 19, 2023, at the Park Plaza Hotel, in Boston
Robert Kennedy Jr and his wife Cheryl Hines wave during an event to announce Kennedy’s candidacy for the United States Presidential Elections of 2024 last week