Why two Republicans voted against bill banning transgender-related surgery

Jan 27, 2023, 9:30 PM | Updated: Mar 12, 2023, 6:05 pm

A group representing adult entertainment companies is suing Utah over a new law that requires their...

FILE: Sen. Todd Weiler, R-Woods Cross, discusses a bill he is sponsoring, during a Senate Judiciary, Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Committee hearing in the Senate Building in Salt Lake City, on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023. (Kristin Murphy Deseret News)

(Kristin Murphy Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Senate has approved a bill banning transgender-related surgery and puberty blockers for minors. A total of two Republicans voted against it.

Sen. Todd Weiler (R-Woods Cross), who voted against the bill, joins Jeff Caplin’s Afternoon News to discuss why he opposes S.B. 16.

Weiler says many transgender individuals and their family members feel picked on and targeted by the bill.

“I hear families say that getting some hormone therapy or getting these puberty blockers has saved my kid’s life,” he tells Caplin. “That it helped them feel less suicidal.”

Both sides of the bill banning transgender-related surgery

The senator acknowledges “both sides” of the debate. 

“What I want to emphasize [is] there are really good arguments on both sides of these issues,” he says. “Unfortunately, the legislatures that voted for the bill, they get called transphobic and I don’t think that that’s necessarily fair.”

Along with this, Weier is running a separate bill requiring parental consent if a student wants to change their name or the pronouns they use on school records. He says this bill will not require teachers to out students to their parents.

“If a student goes up to a teacher and says ‘I would prefer you call me by this different name or different pronouns,’ and the teacher says ‘I’m cool with that,’ that’s fine,” he says. “But if the teachers being told by the principal ‘Thou shalt call this student by a different name,’ we have adopted this policy, ‘Oh but don’t tell mom and dad, because we don’t think they’re supportive,’ I think that’s a little bit dicey.”

Weiler says his biggest fear is parents pulling their children from school because they weren’t notified about the name or pronoun change.

“If they do find out, they are likely to pull their trans child out of the school. And then they’d lose all of their support network,” he says.

Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News can be heard on weekdays from 3 to 7 p.m.

Further reading

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Jeff Caplan's Afternoon News

It looks like GenZ is getting tired of online dating....

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: The decline of online dating

Gen Z is getting tired of online dating. What's next?

16 hours ago

It’s the first annual Miss AI Pageant. Each of the contestants is so beautiful they could stop tr...

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: The Miss AI Pageant

The women are artificial. The prize money is real.

4 days ago

Like their namesakes in the desert west, the ice cowboys of Canada are in the midst of the annual r...

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: Hot enough for ya, cowboy?

In the brittle cold Maritime provinces, the perpetual clouds are parting for a month or two, and the ice cowboys are going to work.

5 days ago

The Delta Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, which is at the center of the plans to revitalize downtow...

Jeff Caplan

Jeff’s Minute of News: Is the downtown redevelopment worth a billion dollars?

Is the downtown redevelopment worth a billion? The answer depends on who pays for it.

5 days ago

Google has damaged itself with it's rollout of AI-assisted searches, argues KSL NewsRadio's afterno...

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: You can’t trust Google search anymore

Google has inflicted AI on its search users, and the aftermath hasn't been pretty. Now you must actually click on the links and read.

12 days ago

(Getty Images)...

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: The Court of Public Opinion in session for Corey Harris

When pondering the justice system in America, I'm seeing the seesaw of justice swinging up and down in the case of Corey Harris.

12 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Underwater shot of the fisherman holding the fish...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Your Bear Lake fishing guide

Bear Lake offers year-round fishing opportunities. By preparing ahead of time, you might go home with a big catch!

A group of people cut a purple ribbon...


Comcast announces major fiber network expansion in Utah

Comcast's commitment to delivering extensive coverage signifies a monumental leap toward a digitally empowered future for Utahns.

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.


Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Why two Republicans voted against bill banning transgender-related surgery