Politics

Swimming star Riley Gaines and Rep. LaMalfa warn of growing ‘gender ideology propaganda’

Professional swimmer Riley Gaines and Rep. Doug LaMalfa, R-Calif., bashed President Joe Biden’s advocacy of “gender ideology propaganda” ahead of his State of the Union speech on Tuesday.

“I am truthfully intrigued as to how he will address the state of our nation. What is the state of our nation? What’s the condition of it?” Gaines said ahead of Biden’s SOTU address, raising concerns that the administration is pushing for more female-identifying men to compete in women’s sports across the country.

Gaines, an NCAA swimmer and All-American athlete, was forced to compete against biological male Lia Thomas in a swimming competition where the two tied for first place, a match she outspokenly believes was unfair due to biological differences.

“Particularly I’m interested in how he can phrase what’s happening with the gender ideology propaganda being pushed, and the education system and women’s prisons and women’s changing spaces and of course, women’s sports,” the swimmer stated.

I AM A 12X NCAA ALL-AMERICAN SWIMMER. FEMALE ATHLETES SHOULD COMPETE ON THE BASIS OF SEX, NOT GENDER

Former University of Kentucky swimmer Riley Gaines, right, speaks during a rally on Thursday, Jan. 12, 2023, outside the NCAA Convention in San Antonio.  (AP Photo/Darren Abate)

The transgender movement was brought up briefly during Biden’s speech, prompting standing ovations from individuals like Vice President Kamala Harris and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, I-Ariz.

BIDEN’S STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS: TOP 5 MOMENTS

“Let’s also pass the bipartisan Equality Act to ensure LGBTQ Americans, especially transgender young people, can live with safety and dignity,” Biden said. 

“We’re going completely backwards on this,” LaMalfa in a pre-SOTU speech with Gaines. “It’s outrageous and unbelievable. And I’m wondering, where are all the feminist women that have fought for so many other things? Why are they cited on this?”

President Biden speaks during a State of the Union address at the US Capitol in Washington, D.C., US, on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2023.

President Biden speaks during a State of the Union address at the US Capitol in Washington, D.C., US, on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2023. (Nathan Howard)

“I don’t see how you can twist any of that to where it’s not blatantly obvious that women are not receiving fair and equal opportunities in sports and privacy and safety and just safe spaces and changing rooms. That’s not what we’re seeing in our country today,” Gaines said. 

“It shouldn’t require courage to say there are two sexes,” Gaines said, encouraging other women to speak up on the issue.

Riley Gaines was forced to compete against transgender swimmer Lia Thomas, pictured, in the 500-meter NCAA race.

Riley Gaines was forced to compete against transgender swimmer Lia Thomas, pictured, in the 500-meter NCAA race. (Josh Reynolds)

In January 2021, Biden issued an executive order calling for students be allowed to play on sports teams and use bathrooms based on their gender identity rather than biological sex.

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House Republicans introduced the “Protection of Women and Girls in Sports Act,” legislation that seeks to recognize that in athletics, sex is “based solely on a person’s reproductive biology and genetics at birth.”

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