Nebraska senator with trans son joins ‘little’ filibuster

A professed “petty” Nebraska senator with a transgender child and “a grudge” has joined fellow Democrats in vowing to completely deadlock the Legislature until June after it voted in favor of legislation banning gender-affirming childcare.

Omaha Sen. Megan Hunt went into the chamber on Wednesday to reveal why the Let Them Grow bill was so personal – and to accuse supporters of the bill of fomenting “satanic panic.”

“My son is trans,” she said of her 12-year-old child, who she complained was unable to get gender-affirming care.

“And this bill, colleagues, is such an affront to me personally and would violate my rights to raise my child in Nebraska.”

Even before her peers voted to pass LB 574 on Thursday — which had some opposing Democrats in tears — Hunt vowed to follow the filibuster started in February by Senator Machaela Cavanaugh, who was stopped just this week in hopes of blocking the trans bill.

Omaha Sen. Megan Hunt.
Sen. Hunt spoke about her own “trans son” during the fiery debate.
Twitter / @NebraskaMegan

“If this bill is passed, all your bills will end up on the chopping block and the bridge will be burned down,” Hunt warned the chamber.

“No one in the world holds grudges like I do. And nobody in the world cares less about being petty than I do. I don’t care — I don’t like you,” she said said her fellow senatorsher too called “cowards”. in a tweet.

Cavanaugh, A married mother of three childrenAfter a warning, he had already conducted an almost three-week filibuster about the draft law: “I will burn down the session about this draft law.”

She said she only stopped it to record which lawmakers would “legislate hate against children” and support legislation banning hormone treatments, puberty blockers and sex-reassignment surgeries for under-18s.

On Thursday, she vowed to stick to her plan to spend the remainder of the lawmakers’ 90-day session, which begins on March 9.

“I will not give up on the Nebraska children. Failure is not an option because if I fail, I disappoint children and I will not disappoint children.” she tweeted of the bill, which she had described as “genocide”.

State Senator Machaela Cavanaugh prepares to address the debate.
Cavanaugh resumed her filibuster, which she only paused to discuss the Gender Grooming Act.

Other lawmakers also vowed to join her and Hunt, including Lincoln Sen. Danielle Conrad and Omaha Sen. Jen Day.

Day wept in the chamber on Wednesday as he read a letter from a psychologist who claimed the bill will “result in the deaths of transgender and gender-biased youth, likely before the end of the school year.”

“I want you all to go out in the rotunda and look those parents in the eye and tell them you’re voting for this law even though you know it could potentially kill their child,” Day said through sobs.

Hunt meets with protesters outside of the debate.
Hunt also spoke to protesters drawn to the fiery debate.
Twitter / @NebraskaMegan

Senator John Fredrickson, the first openly gay man elected to the Nebraska legislature, also broke down in tears before reading a letter from a constituent who said her son would likely have taken his own life had he not provided gender-affirming care would have received as a teenager.

Protesters had booed and cursed lawmakers after backing the measures.

“I’m a ball of anger … I know so many people — so many kids — that get hurt by this,” said Wrenn Jacobson, 29, of Lincoln.

“They come first because of the children. Then get the adults.”

The bill was introduced by Republican Sen. Kathleen Kauth, who also has another bill that would ban trans people from using bathrooms and locker rooms or playing on athletic teams that don’t match the gender listed on their birth certificates.

Republican Senator Kathleen Kauth.
The bill was introduced by Republican Senator Kathleen Kauth.
Craig Chandler / University of NebraskaâLincoln

She accused Democratic opponents of using “obnoxious exaggerations” and dealing with the filibuster “selfishly and childishly.”

In an interview on Wednesday, she cited “reliable studies” from Europe showing that children with gender dysphoria “who are allowed to watch what a therapy is without pushing them into one of the chemicals” are 85% likely “not in anymore.” Consider yourself trans” after puberty.

“We want to give these kids every opportunity to grow their bodies, grow their brains, let things develop more fully and process the issues they’re experiencing,” she said, before receiving irreversible treatment.

“It’s a reasonable bill. They don’t allow children to direct their health care when it comes to mutilating their bodies,” she added.

Her bill went ahead by a vote of 30 to 17, with two lawmakers not voting. Although bills can be advanced with a simple majority, 33 votes are required to end debate and overcome a filibuster.

The Nebraska legislature currently consists of 32 registered Republicans and 17 registered Democrats — just enough for the minority to block bills they don’t like if they stick together.

In that case, Democratic Senator Mike McDonnell voted with Republicans to end the debate and later voted to move the bill forward.

“There’s a world of difference between 9 and 19,” he said. “I think adult decisions should be made by adults.”

The bill must survive two more debates to pass in the unique one-house, officially bipartisan legislature. Republican Gov. Jim Pillen has said he will sign the law when it reaches his desk.

With postal wires Nebraska senator with trans son joins ‘little’ filibuster


JACLYN DIAZ is a USTimeToday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. JACLYN DIAZ joined USTimeToday in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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