- Associated Press - Tuesday, November 24, 2015

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper has rejected a call by Gov. Pat McCrory to side with a Virginia school district against a discrimination lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union that would allow a transgender high school student to use the men’s bathroom.

President Barack Obama’s administration filed a friend-of-the-court brief in the lawsuit last month.

McCrory, a Republican, wrote to Cooper, a Democrat, last week asking him to join the South Carolina attorney general in an opposing friend-of-the-court brief, multiple media outlets report.

“This extreme position directly contradicts the express language of federal law and threatens local control of our schools,” McCrory wrote in his request. “It also disregards the safety and privacy concerns of parents and students.”

A spokeswoman for the attorney general’s office said Monday that Cooper reviewed McCrory’s request and that the state won’t be joining South Carolina’s friend-of-the-court brief.

Cooper is seeking the Democratic nomination to oppose McCrory next year. His political campaign also released a statement noting that McCrory recently called for Obama to stop sending Syrian refugees to North Carolina in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks and then sought campaign money on the issue.

“This week, (McCrory has) found another group to politicize,” spokesman Jamal Little said. “Next week, who knows who’ll be the target of a governor whose only path to re-election is dividing North Carolina.”

The Virginia student, born female, identifies as male and wants to use male restrooms. The School Board adopted a policy last year that requires students to use private restrooms or restrooms designated for their biological sex. The student’s lawsuit was filed in federal court in Norfolk, Virginia.

McCrory said he’s concerned that if the federal district court rules in favor of the Virginia student and the Obama administration, North Carolina school districts could be affected.


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