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Monday News & Notes

Excerpts and snippets from across the political landscape.

2 min read

Slow news day, but still some things to share ...

Judge blocks White House from protecting students identifying as transgender in Kentucky, 19 other states

A federal judge is temporarily blocking the Biden administration from enforcing laws that would protect transgender students. The ruling by a federal judge in Tennessee applies to 20 states, including Kentucky. At issue is the right of transgender athletes to participate in school sports and to require schools to use their preferred pronouns. Schools that refuse to follow the administration’s transgender guidelines could be subject to losing federal funding. (WLKY)

Biden abandons plan to nominate anti-abortion, GOP federal judge, blames Rand Paul

President Joe Biden is abandoning plans to nominate an anti-abortion Republican attorney as a federal judge in Kentucky, with the White House citing opposition from a surprising source: Republican Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky.

The White House's retreat from its planned nomination of attorney Chad Meredith — in what was a purported deal with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell — follows a strong backlash from Democrats and progressives furious that Biden would consider a Federalist Society member who has argued against abortion access to fill a vacancy on the bench.

“In considering potential District Court nominees, the White House learned that Senator Rand Paul will not return a blue slip on Chad Meredith," Andrew Bates, White House deputy press secretary, said Friday. "Therefore, the White House will not nominate Mr. Meredith.” (Courier-Journal)

And, in response:

AG Cameron taps law enforcement backers to endorse for gov race

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron is going back to the well for endorsements in the race for governor. Cameron released a list of 54 law enforcement officials as he seeks the GOP nomination next May. “As your Governor, I want everyone in the law enforcement community to know that I’ll never abandon you for political gain,” Cameron said in a statement on social media. “We cannot appease the anti-police movement that is sweeping this nation. Our communities are less safe as a result. Law enforcement needs to know that their Governor has their back.” His campaign suffered a setback this month as he released poor numbers from his first fundraising period in the election, and is likely unable to close out the field. (KY Fried Politics)

Judge lifts injunction, allowing 15-week abortion ban to take effect in Kentucky

A federal judge has lifted part of her injunction against Kentucky’s omnibus abortion bill that state lawmakers passed this year. The move allows the state’s ban on abortions after 15 weeks to take effect.

U.S. District Judge Rebecca Grady Jennings’ order on Thursday said the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade last month meant there was no longer legal grounds to continue to block the 15-week ban included in House Bill 3. The order also said EMW Women’s Surgical Center, an abortion provider who’s a plaintiff in the case, did not oppose lifting that portion of the injunction.

The injunction is still in place for other parts of the law, which restricts abortion medications and makes it harder for minors to receive care.

Abortions prior to 15 weeks are legal in Kentucky, for now. (WKMS)

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The Daily Wrap for Monday, 5/20

The Daily Wrap for Monday, 5/20

A very light news day, with most of the focus on the arrest of the golfer at the PGA last week. Of note, though, is Heather Cox Richardson’s summary of President Biden’s commencement speech at Morehouse.

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