DOJ Tries to Shut Down Case That Exposed Biden Admin Colluded on Medical Standards Used to Justify Child Sex Changes

Merrick Garland
by Katelynn Richardson


The Department of Justice (DOJ) moved Monday to shut down a lawsuit that exposed the Biden administration’s collusion with a transgender medical organization to develop the very standards it is now using to defend child sex changes at the Supreme Court.

After the Supreme Court agreed to take up the Biden administration’s challenge to Tennessee’s ban on child sex changes, the DOJ asked a lower court to put another case challenging a similar Alabama ban on hold pending the high court’s decision. While the DOJ requested a halt on the Alabama case to “avoid the prospect of re-litigation of the claims” after the Supreme Court issues its ruling, the defendants argued the government likely has another motive: shielding information about the administration’s involvement in developing the standards it heavily relies on from the Supreme Court.


“The Supreme Court deserves to know the full story, but the United States seems intent on telling just a piece of it,” they wrote in a Wednesday filing. “When the United States sought Supreme Court review, it chose its vehicle carefully: a case arising out of a preliminary injunction with a very limited evidentiary record.”

The Supreme Court agreed Monday to hear United States v. Skrmetti, which challenges Tennessee’s ban on transgender medical procedures for minors such as cross-sex hormones, puberty blockers and surgeries. In its brief, the government relies extensively on the World Professional Association for Transgender Health’s (WPATH) Standards of Care Version 8 (SOC 8) guidelines to argue that treatments like cross-sex hormones may be medically necessary for adolescents experiencing gender dysphoria.

WPATH claims its SOC-8 are “the most expert, in-depth, and evidence-based and consensus-based guidelines internationally” on transgender healthcare. However, Canadian sex researcher James Cantor’s unsealed expert report in the Alabama case revealed members of SOC-8’s development team caved to outside pressure, allowing the guidelines to be influenced by political pressure and litigation strategy.

The unsealed expert report revealed that Assistant Secretary for Health Rachel Levine pressued WPATH to speed up its development of SOC 8 to advance the administration’s political goals.

“The United States has also long known that the authors of SOC-8 themselves were making decisions about what to include (or not) in their vaunted ‘evidence-based practice guidelines’ based purely on political and legal considerations,” the defendants continued in their filing. “Given this discovery, it is no wonder the United States rushed to the Supreme Court with a case without a robust evidentiary record—and then immediately tried to shut this case down.”

The DOJ previously tried to shut the Alabama case down in December, noting higher courts had already been asked to consider “the appropriate standard of review in this and similar equal protection challenges to state laws” banning transgender procedures for minors. At the time, the district court rejected the request, but noted it may be appropriate if the Supreme Court granted review in the future.

“This Court should not reward the United States’ gambit just because the Supreme Court granted review,” the defendants argue. “Indeed, a full airing of the evidence is all the more important now that the Supreme Court has granted cert. That Court should at least be aware of what discovery has revealed in a case with full discovery as it considers ruling on a case with limited discovery.”

A report unsealed in March revealed a three-judge panel found 11 attorneys involved in challenging Alabama’s ban impermissibly engaged in “judge-shopping” in an effort to direct the case to a more friendly judge, concluding they “purposefully attempted to circumvent the random case assignment procedures.” U.S. District Judge Liles Burke scheduled hearings on the matter for this week.

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Katelynn Richardson is a reporter at Daily Caller News Foundation.



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