Texas House Speaker insists that the future of the bathroom bill is unclear

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HOUSTON, TX - MARCH 15: Texas Lt. Govenor Dan Patrick speaks at a watch party for Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) on March 15, 2016 in Houston, Texas. Cruz is in a tight race with Donald Trump in the Missouri GOP primary, while Trump took Florida, North Carolina, and Illinois. Gov. John Kasich won his home state of Ohio. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

State Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick earlier this year said moves to introduce such a bill as going to force people of the state to use the bathroom facilities matched with the gender of birth, regardless of gender identity, although the financial losses of it were predicted to be catastrophic. House Speaker Joe Straus has again cast doubt on the measure, stopping short of calling the measure doomed. Straus, who sets the agenda of the Republican-controlled legislature spoke at a University of Texas forum. I don’t feel a great deal of fervor to promote that bill in the House,” Straus said. “I think we should be very careful about doing something that can make Texas less competitive,” he told the Texas Association of Business earlier this year. But still the sad experience of North Carolina and its own bathroom bill seems not to influence on Texans as much as it should. “Legislation to protect women’s privacy and business is essential to assure that sexual predators … will not be able to freely enter women’s restrooms, locker rooms or showers …,” a note from Patrick, applauding efforts to derail the repeal of HB2 read. A press conference was held last month by the Association of Business, which announced the results of a study which estimated that 100,000 jobs and $8 billion in the state’s economy could be lost if Texas passes its own bathroom bill. The message from the Texas business community is loud and clear,” Chris Wallace, the organisation’s president said at the press conference. Protecting Texas from billions of dollars in losses is simple: Don’t pass unnecessary laws that discriminate against Texans and our visitors.”

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