>> President Obama has excluded the voice of the people. We stand today to ensure that those voices are heard.>> Officials from 11 states suing the Obama Administration Wednesday, looking to overturn a controversial new transgender bathroom policy. Texas leading the charge against the White House, accusing the federal government of rewriting laws by quote, administrative fiat.
Reuters legal correspondent Joseph Ax.>> The lawsuit first and foremost claims that the Obama administration overstepped his authority. That they're essentially usurping the power that should be hand it over to the Congress or to individual states to set policy for transgender bathroom use in schools and other places.
They're also questioning whether the Obama administration's interpretation of federal law prohibiting gender discrimination that is sex discrimination, whether the word sex extends to the rights of transgender individuals, and whether it extends to the issue of gender identity. Earlier this month, the Justice and Education Departments sent letters to all public schools in the country, saying they should allow transgender students to use the bathrooms that match their gender identify.
And suggesting they could lose federal funding if they don't comply. The guidelines drew quick criticism from conservatives. Nine of the states involved in Wednesday's lawsuit are led by Republican Governors. But the Obama administration maintains the rules which do not carry the force of law are meant to protect transgender students from harassment and discrimination.