Presidential candidate Nikki Haley supports banning sex-change treatment for minors, her campaign told the Daily Caller on Monday — one day after she said transgender minors should have access to “whatever they need” to “not be suicidal,” including mental health “therapy.”
The former U.N. ambassador said Sunday that transgender children should get “help, the therapy, whatever they need so that they can feel better and not be suicidal” but that transgender issues should not force students to walk “on eggshells” for fear of cancellation. Haley made the remarks while speaking at a CNN town hall about her history of opposing a transgender bathroom bill that would have required individuals to use bathrooms matching their sex assigned at birth. The former South Carolina governor previously said she “strong armed” a state legislator who proposed the bill because she wanted bathroom access to be decided on an individual basis.
On Monday morning, while speaking on CBS, Haley responded to a question about what kind of “care” trans-identifying teens should be able to access.
“What care should be on the table when a 12-year-old child in this country assigned female at birth says ‘actually I feel more comfortable living as a boy.’ What should the law allow the response to be?” CBS’ Tony Dokoupil asked Haley. Medical treatments for youth seeking transition — euphemistically referred to as “gender-affirming care” — include puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones and the removal of healthy tissue.
“I think the law should stay out of it and I think parents should handle it,” Haley said in response to Dokoupil. “This is a job for the parents to handle. And then if that child becomes 18, if they want to make more of a permanent change, they can do that. But I think up until then, we see with our teenage kids, they go through a lot during puberty go through a lot of confusion, they go through a lot of anxiety, they go through a lot of pressures. We should support them the whole way through, but we don’t need to go in force something in schools, and we do not need schools sitting there hiding from the parents what gender pronoun they are using. We don’t need to have those conversations in schools. Those are conversations that should be had at home.”
Other Republican presidential candidates — including Donald Trump, Ron DeSantis, Vivek Ramaswamy, Asa Hutchinson and Tim Scott, as well as likely candidate Mike Pence — have all come out against sex changes for children under 18, the Daily Caller reported Sunday. Haley’s campaign did not initially respond to inquiries from the Caller on the same topic. (RELATED: GOP 2024 Candidates Are United On One Thing: Opposing Sex Changes For Minors)
Haley’s spokesperson Ken Farnaso then told the Daily Caller on Monday afternoon, after the story was published, that the candidate “supports banning sex change treatments for minors.” The story was then updated to include Farnaso’s comment.
Haley has also campaigned fervently against biological men competing in female sports, another culture war issue on which top Republican candidates have focused. Haley — currently the only female Republican in the 2024 race — has called the sports issue “one of the most important women’s rights issues of our time” and has repeatedly called for measures to “save women’s sports.”
Sports are being rigged against women in favor of biological men. The House will soon vote on one of the most important women’s rights issues of our time. We must have the backs of our girls.
— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) April 19, 2023
She condemned President Joe Biden for “rigging” female sports by signing an executive order regarding schools reviewing federal funding letting biological men play on female sports teams.