Alabama AG, 21 other states file lawsuit aimed at new SNAP, Title IX guidelines

Other states filing in the lawsuit include Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Attorney General Steve Marshall in a WTVY News 4 interview on May 17, 2022.
Attorney General Steve Marshall in a WTVY News 4 interview on May 17, 2022.
Published: Jul. 26, 2022 at 3:51 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WTVY) - A lawsuit filed by Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall against the Biden administration looks to shoot back at new federal nutritional assistance guidance aimed at “sex discrimination.”

Marshall and the state of Alabama filed the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee on Tuesday alongside Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and West Virginia.

The issue at hand is with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) guidance updates in regards to the Food and Nutrition Act and Title IX.

In a May 5 release from the USDA, it was said that they along with the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) interpretations of the prohibition and discrimination based on sex found in both Title IX and the Act’s Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) would now include “sexual orientation and gender identity.”

“Joe Biden and his administration are obsessed with imposing their extremist sexual politics on the people of our great nation, adults and children alike,” said Attorney General Marshall. “Their latest plan is to hold schoolchildren’s food hostage unless their schools submit to the left’s radical ‘gender identity’ agenda. This immoral and illegal scheme cannot stand.”

Marshall also aimed at the Biden administration’s for the rising inflation and food costs, as well as “looming recession.”

According to the release and lawsuit documents, the state attorneys general argue that the USDA’s guidance is unlawful and was issued without providing the states the opportunity for input. They base this on requirements of the Administrative Procedures Act.

Another argument is that the USDA created its guidance on an “obvious misreading and misapplication” of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on Bostock v. Clayton County, according to the release. That 2020 ruling’s conclusion was that Title VII prohibits an employer from discriminating against an individual on the basis of sexual orientation.

The Alabama AG’s office pointed out that “The National School Lunch Program services nearly 30 million schoolchildren each day, many of whom rely on it for breakfast, lunch, or both. Approximately 100,000 public and nonprofit private schools and residential childcare institutions receive federal funding to provide subsidized free or reduced-price meals for qualifying children.”

Marshall’s team says the new guidance “imposes new and unlawful regulatory measures on state agencies and operators receiving federal financial assistance from the USDA and thus threatens essential nutritional services for Alabama’s most vulnerable children.”

The attorneys general lawsuit can be read here.

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