Are pigs flying?

BREAKING: A Republican governor has just vetoed an anti-trans law.

Let me just repeat that:


Breaking News

The Wahington Post (banner)

Arkansas governor vetoes ban on gender-affirming medical treatments for transgender youth, calling it a ‘vast government overreach’


Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) vetoed a bill that would have prohibited doctors from providing transgender minors with treatments such as puberty blockers and hormone therapies, or referring them for such medications. The bill was part of a wave of legislation in U.S. states seeking to restrict the rights of transgender young people. Similar bans are pending in at least 17 other states.

Read more
[at Washington Post]

Arkansas, for those blissfully unaware, is about as Southern, as Republican/red and as evangelical xtian as states come, and I mean that in all the worst ways.

I’m really not sure what to make of this news. I certainly don’t know what it means for Republicans, although I wouldn’t bet on any of those 17 governors in states where similar laws are pending to follow suit. The only thing I’m sure of is it means a hell of a lot to Arkansas trans kids, and to those who care about them and want the very best medical approaches available to them. And not, you know, banned.

Of course, everyone should want that for all kids. But we live in a country where the conservative asshole epidemic is worse than the goddam COVID epidemic. And that is saying something.


  1. says

    The more I think about it the more interesting this is, especially given Hutchison’s brief quotes at that link. He’s decrying the “culture war” behavior and calling this bill regulatory overreach, which it definitely is… and these are not left or even centrist positions, these are actual conservative positions, the ones that we would have expected to hear from the people who called themselves conservatives before the American right-wing went full-speed to Crazytown. We are seeing here the latest results of the deepening split in the Republican party and the breaking of the alliance between its business-conservative and fascist-authoritarian wings.

    May it ruin them.

    Anyway they’ll just override the veto. I’m not convinced he’d have done this if it would actually prevent the passage.

  2. says

    Re: so-called “conservative positions,” for decades now both the business-conservative and fascist-authoritarian wings of the party will completely and utterly reject “traditional conservative principles” whenever it suits their immediate agenda, then flip right back with lightning speed without shame or even bothering with any explanation. Which only demonstrates that they actually have no principles whatsoever. (Except maybe “expedience uber alles?”)

    It just makes me curious: what’s in this for Hutchinson? Distancing himself from the rabid fire-breathing insurrectionist strain in advance of a 2024 presidential run?

    May it ruin them.


  3. says

    It just makes me curious: what’s in this for Hutchinson?

    Well, whatever it is, it’s a personal benefit because if there’s anything universal among so-called “conservatives” in the USA these days, it’s that they are bound and determined not to care about other people.

    Maybe Hutchinson has a grandkid whose trans and their care would be interrupted. (Not that he cares about that, of course, but he wouldn’t want to be a pariah in his own family b/c his actions hurt one of his grandkids.) Maybe it’s about positioning for a presidential run. Maybe it’s something else. I don’t know. But whatever it is, it’s ultimately selfish.

  4. blf says

    As the Grauniad points out, Arkansas governor vetoes bill banning medical treatment for young trans people, “Its Republican-controlled legislature could still enact the measure, however, since it takes only a simple majority to override an Arkansas governor’s veto.” So one guess is he’s being cynical, pretending to listen to the “pleas from pediatricians, social workers and parents of transgender youth who said the measure would harm a community already at risk for depression and suicide”, knowing the legislature will (very?) probably override.

    He has “recently signed a measure allowing doctors to refuse to treat someone because of moral or religious objections, a law opponents have said could be used to turn away LGBTQ patients”, so there is that in his back-pocket, so to speak, should the legislature not override. Arkansas already has a law “banning transgender girls and women from competing on school sports teams consistent with the gender identity.” (The Grauniad is unclear, but I am under the impression he also signed that one.)

    It’s not impossible there are less cynical reasons, but this is a thug (from “rethugican”), so I doubt it.

  5. says

    blf + Crip Dyke: 100% agree. Every self-styled U.S. “conservative” is ultimately a party of one, i.e., self-serving to a pathological (and dangerous) degree, profoundly narcissistic and exhibiting a cavernous empathy deficit.

    In fact it’s such a universal a priori in discussions of the right that we never have to spell it out. Like a fact, or a natural law as unremarkable and unnecessary to say as “gravity exists.” Which is why we’re all up in here wondering what is in it for Hutchinson, and not whether there’s something in it for Hutchinson.

    It’s an amusing paradox why anyone – especially other conservatives – would want a transparently selfish person in a position of power over themselves.

  6. Numenaster, whose eyes are up here says


    [checks calendar]

    It’s … not April first anymore?

    [checks calendar again to be sure]

  7. says

    “conservatism” is just a stealth label for “regressive, racist, corporate wage-slave subjects of the billionaire class and imperialists.” They use “conservative” because the other one is hard for them to pronounce.

  8. klatu says


    […] this vote will cause kids to die.

    Everything said in this thread is true. Republicans are self-serving, greedy bastards. But I think too many still underestimate just how hateful they really are.
    Hate is part of their fascists Christian DNA.
    They want trans children to suffer and die.

    In fact, the list of children they want to see dead is pretty long.

  9. Marja Erwin says

    F. Carlsson says we’re a threat to the survival of the species. Once they believe that, they can rationalize anything.

  10. says

    >In fact, the list of children they want to see dead is pretty long.

    Yea, I agree with this. When that Trump-voter said “he’s hurting the wrong people,” she was saying out loud what most of us already knew: there are other people Republicans think are the right people to hurt.