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Photo: Houston Cofield/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Tennessee's Republican Gov. Bill Lee said Monday that transgender girls should be banned from playing on middle and high school sports teams, claiming trans athletes will "destroy women's sports," AP reports.

Why it matters: His comments come as the Tennessee GOP attempts to pass legislation requiring student-athletes to provide "original" birth certificates in order to participate in school sports. They argue that trans girls have an edge in athletics because they were assigned male at birth, but research has shown there is no automatic advantage.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Jeff Tracy: There’s very little evidence to suggest that trans women hold a competitive advantage over their cisgender counterparts, but there are significant findings regarding the benefits — including higher self-esteem and fewer depressive symptoms — that athletic participation has for trans youth.

  • Decreased muscle mass, decreased strength and body-fat redistribution are three standard effects for trans women who receive estrogen through hormone replacement therapy, per UC San Francisco's Center of Excellence for Transgender Health.
  • It also varies on a case-by-case basis.

What he's saying: "It will ruin the opportunity for girls to earn scholarships," Lee said. "It will put a glass ceiling back over women that hasn’t been there in some time. I think it’s bad for women and for women’s sports."

The big picture: The Supreme Court has ruled that LGBTQ people are protected under the Civil Rights Act, and in an executive order, President Biden prohibited discrimination based on gender identity in school sports.

Go deeper

Feb 10, 2021 - Economy & Business

A million American mothers are out of work

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Nearly a million American mothers have left the workforce during the pandemic — and many of them might not return.

Why it matters: We've dialed the clock back decades in terms of women's workplace progress.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
14 mins ago - Podcasts

House antitrust chair discusses the bills to bust up Big Tech

House lawmakers last week introduced a series of five bipartisan bills designed to curb the power of Big Tech, targeting Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google in all but name.

Axios Re:Cap speaks with Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.), chair of the House antitrust committee and a sponsor on most of the bills, to learn how he plans to get these measures over the finish line. The congressman from Rhode Island also faces a slate of other priorities and in the wake of a spending package to bolster the U.S. tech sector’s ability to compete with China.

Why online games have a shorter life span

"Grand Theft Auto Online" will join a growing list of obsolete games on older platforms this December when Rockstar Game shuts down the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game.

Why it matters: Video game preservation is one of the biggest challenges when it comes to video games, physical or otherwise.