James Dobson, James Dobson Family Institute, who had just weeks ago praised the Trump administration for its policies rejecting the radical agenda of transgenderism, now now is calling on the president to fix a significant problem in a looming trade agreement.
Last month, Dobson, who has advised five presidents and authored dozens of books, praised a Health and Human Services Department proposal to define sex according to “a biological basis that is clear, grounded in science, objective and administrable.”
But now, Dobson and Jenna Ellis, the director of public policy at JDFI, contend in a National Review column that the president’s negotiating team on a trade deal made a mistake and there’s little time to fix it.
“Social policy should not be determined by a trade agreement. In a letter delivered to President Trump earlier this month, 46 conservative members of Congress said they were ‘deeply concerned’ by the unprecedented inclusion in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) of sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) language, for the first time in a Free Trade Agreement,” they write.
“This language is housed in Article 23.9 and Article 23.12, 23 being the chapter on labor. It requires the parties to protect workers from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI), and to promote ‘equality’ in these areas. As we have seen in recent years, of course, such edicts often run headlong into the constitutional right of religious business owners not to violate their core beliefs, in addition to raising thorny questions in a variety of areas including bathroom privacy. This stands to take away freedoms from every private business and churches as well. Congress is also concerned this would violate the constitutional separation of powers because Congress has steadfastly refused to include SOGI language in federal law, and the executive branch does not have legislative power to force new policy through a trade agreement.”
Dobson said the members of Congress are right.
“A trade agreement is not the appropriate place to adopt such a controversial social policy. As the letter states, ‘It is especially inappropriate and insulting to our sovereignty to needlessly submit to social policies which the United States Congress has so far explicitly refused to accept.’”
The signing is scheduled for Friday, Dobson warned.
“To be clear, there is a legal question of whether the current language would create a new obligation for compliance. But there is also a concern about the precedent this would set for future trade agreements and the strong likelihood that an activist court would point to the language as an excuse to cement these policies in U.S. law. On top of that, the language stands in stark contrast to the Trump administration’s own approach to the issue, as the president is working to undo Obama-era executive orders that went beyond federal law to implement SOGI protections in certain contexts.”
The language, the commentary explained, apparently is a compromise because representatives of Canada had wanted an entire chapter on Justin Trudeau’s radical far-left social policy.
“Although trade agreements can contain language relating to human rights and anti-discrimination policy, such as agreeing not to use child or slave labor or to enforce anti-discrimination laws in accordance with a country’s national law, a trade agreement is no place to be advancing an unsettled and controversial new concept,” Dobson commented.
They suggested those at the negotiating level in the Trump administration are not up to speed on the policy that has been established at the highest level, either.
Just weeks ago, Dobson said the administration’s restoration of the definition of sex as male and female and established at birth is “courageous and common sense.”
“In this decision, the president has declared that the gender-based discriminations outlawed in Title IX are limited to male versus female. It does not include transgender sexual orientation or gender identity language, which is properly excluded from the definition of sex. We urge Congress to follow the president’s lead by providing a legal definition of sex in federal law so that the Title IX legislation is abundantly and legally certain in all instances.”
Title IX is the federal law passed in 1972 that bans sex discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.
The Dobson institute said it’s “vital not only for the HHS, which must deal with these regulations frequently, but also for all government, including the courts, which requires a clear understanding of what Congress meant by the word, ‘sex’ when they originally established Title IX.”
“It’s time to put an end to the attempts by LGBT activists to shoehorn into Title IX any identities and language that go against legislative intent and biology. This decision is good for America, and the faith-based community should be encouraged.”
It was Barack Obama who famously ordered all public schools to let girls go into boys’ showers, or vice versa, according to “gender identity.” But the order was reversed immediately by the Trump administration.