Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - The Montana Supreme Court issued a decision this week that HB 112, entitled ‘The Save Women’s Sports Act’ is unconstitutional, in that it interferes with a previous ruling by the Montana Supreme Court because they “arrogate[d] to the Legislature powers that are reserved to the Montana Board of Regents.” (see full decision linked below)

Clerk of the Montana Supreme Court Bowen Greenwood explained.

The Montana Supreme Court Ruled HB 112 Unconstitutional

“The court ruled recently that a number of bills from previous legislative sessions, in particular 2021, were according to the court unconstitutional,” began Greenwood. “They do that on a theory that the Montana Constitution gives total and complete control over college campuses to the Board of Regents, so anytime the legislature tries to pass a law about anything on a college campus, people who believe that theory will say it's unconstitutional and that's what the court did here.”

Greenwood said each school will set their own policies, but the Montana Legislature has no say in the matter. Greenwood offered this personal opinion of the decision.

Clerk of the Supreme Court Bowen Greenwood Disagrees with the Decision

“The Board of Regents and the administration of each school will set their own policies on transgender people participating in sports, but they are college campuses, and of course, we all know how they're going to decide. So as things stand now the way those colleges have set their rules; a six foot seven-inch man can walk onto the girl's team and play basketball.”

Greenwood, who identifies as a conservative Republican, said eventually, he hopes the U.S. Supreme Court will be called upon for a final decision.

“It will be interesting,” he said. “I think it may happen right away or it may take a few years, but it unquestionably is going to happen,” he said. “Hopefully, the U.S. Supreme Court will do something about this before it goes that far, because it's a decision that I patently disagree with. It's ridiculous.”

Democrat and Republican Responses to the Supreme Court's Decision

Robyn Driscoll, Chair of the Montana Democratic Party told me in a text message on Tuesday that “the Montana Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling that simply says each university is in charge of its own athletic policies, not Helena politicians”.

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Montana Governor Greg Gianforte provided this response to the Montana Supreme Court’s decision in a press release:

“I am deeply disappointed in the Montana Supreme Court for enabling biological men to compete in women’s sports. This decision degrades and humiliates female athletes who have worked and trained hard to excel in their sports. Girls and women should compete against each other, not against boys and men. From the Biden administration’s recent revision of Title IX to our Montana Supreme Court’s ruling, the far left is undermining the integrity of women’s sports. In Montana, we’re committed to fairness in women’s sports and will continue to defend our daughters and granddaughters from unfair competition.”

Read the Montana Supreme Court’s full decision here.

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