White House Denies Role In Justice Department Decision To Threaten North Carolina

FILE - In this Jan. 27, 2016 file photo, a sticker that reads, "Keep Locker Rooms Safe," is worn by a person supporting a bill that would eliminate Washington's new rule allowing transgender people use gender-segregated bathrooms and locker rooms in public buildings consistent with their gender identity, at the …
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

The White House denies playing a role in the Justice Department’s decision to threaten North Carolina over the “bathroom” law passed by the state government in March.

“When it comes to enforcement actions, those are decisions that are made entirely by attorneys at the Department of Justice,” Press Secretary Josh Earnest said when questioned about the decision.

In a letter to North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory, the Department of Justice warned yesterday that the law restricting bathroom use by the opposite sex violates the Civil Rights Act.

Earnest says that the White House had discussed the issue with with several federal agencies including the Justice Department, but that the decision to send the letter was independent of the White House.

“All of that, of course, is separate from the enforcement decision that was made by the Department of Justice and announced just yesterday,” he insists.

The letter from the Justice Department drew criticism from supporters of the state law in North Carolina.

“We have concluded that, in violation of Title VII, the State is engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination against its employees and both you and the State are engaged in a pattern or practice of resistance to the full enjoyment of Title VII rights by employees of public agencies,” the letter read.

Governor McCrory has reacted to the letter informing North Carolina residents that they are reviewing the message for next steps.

“The right and expectation of privacy in one of the most private areas of our personal lives is now in jeopardy,” he said.


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