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GOP Oklahoma lawmaker criticized for transgender comments

An Oklahoma lawmaker who helped revive an anti-transgender bill is coming under fire for saying transgender people “have a mental illness.”

OKLAHOMA CITY — An Oklahoma lawmaker who helped revive an anti-transgender bill is coming under fire for saying transgender people “have a mental illness.”

Rep. Justin Humphrey made the comment in an email exchange with a woman who was urging him to vote against the bill. Humphrey defended his comments in an interview Friday with The Associated Press. 

Oklahoma is one of more than a dozen states where lawmakers are proposing restrictions on athletics or gender-confirming health care for trans minors this year.

Opponents of the bill have expressed concern its passage could lead to the NCAA moving its College Softball World Series from Oklahoma.