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SIMI VALLEY, California — Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) dismissed parents’ concerns Wednesday about California’s policies that prevent schools from notifying parents when their children indicate a desire to change their gender.
The issue has triggered a major debate in California, with Newsom’s administration suing a local school district in Chino Valley, in Riverside County, which adopted a parental notification policy in a recent 4-1 school board vote.
Newsom appeared in the spin room after the second Republican presidential primary debate at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library. He disparaged the candidates on stage before facing a question from – News:
– News: Why should parents not know if their kids are transitioning at school?
Newsom: It’s a hell of a thing — you’re talking about one percent of the population. Climate change, that’s going to impact 100% of the population, wasn’t even brought up, and we’re talking about trans issues?
– News: Here in California, this is an issue.
Other Reporter: It’s a big issue for parents.
Newsom: This is a front-and-center issue to America?
– News: Why should parents not know?
Newsom: It’s the great — it’s the great distraction. This is one of the greatest distractions and it’s classic. One percent of the population of the United States. These kids just want to live.
– News: Why can’t parents know?
Newsom: The kids just want to live. And we’re having a debate about trans issues? At the Reagan library? You ought to be ashamed.
A recent Rasmussen poll showed that 84% of California voters support parental notification policies. The state argues that these policies endanger the rights of children by potentially exposing them to bullying at school.
Earlier this month, Newsom claimed that parents who cared about the issue had been “ginned up” by Republicans.