News Releases

Attorneys General Griffin and Bailey File Title IX Suit on Behalf of Six States Alongside Arkansas High School Athlete

LITTLE ROCK – Attorney General Tim Griffin and Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey today issued the following statements after filing suit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri on behalf of four other state attorneys general alongside an Arkansas high school athlete against the U.S. Department of Education over its new rule interpreting Title IX:

“The overwhelming majority of Americans see the Biden administration’s rule change for what it is: a ridiculous, nonsensical and illegal election-year move that few can comprehend or support. It’s outrageous.

“Congress enacted Title IX to protect and promote opportunities for women and girls in education and sports. For the last half century, that’s what it has done. But President Biden and his Department of Education now want to radically reinterpret Title IX and recast it as a rule about gender identity.

“The rule we’re challenging today requires schools and universities to allow men onto women and girls’ sports teams. It robs young female athletes of opportunities. It forces schools and universities to allow men into women and girls locker rooms, restrooms, and shower facilities. It compels teachers, administrators, and even fellow students to use an individual’s preferred pronouns. And it subjects anyone who disagrees with President Biden’s view of sex to investigation and possible sanction.

“That contravenes Title IX’s plain language, and it violates the Constitution. That’s why we’re challenging it, and it’s also why we’re confident the federal courts will set aside this unlawful regulation. I am proud to stand with my fellow attorneys general and one of my constituents against President Biden’s latest attempt to push forward by fiat what Congress never passed into law and to defend the laws we’ve passed in Arkansas to protect female athletes.”

Attorney General Bailey added:

“Joe Biden is once again exceeding his constitutional authority, this time to put a radical transgender ideology ahead of the safety of women and girls. As the father of a young daughter, I take this personally. The Biden Administration has threatened to hold federal funding hostage from any institution who rejects this unconstitutional and sexist rule. I’m filing suit because I will not allow federal bureaucrats to subject Missouri girls to unsafe conditions in order to push a radical transgender ideology.”

The suit, filed by the attorneys general of Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and an Arkansas high school athlete asks the court to stay the rule; grant a preliminary injunction preventing the rule’s implementation; enter a judgment that the Department of Education’s interpretation is unlawful; and vacate the rule.

The lawsuit can be read here.

About Attorney General Tim Griffin

Tim Griffin was sworn in as the 57th Attorney General of Arkansas on January 10, 2023, having
previously served as the state’s 20th Lieutenant Governor from 2015-2023. From 2011-2015, Griffin served as the 24th representative of Arkansas’s Second Congressional District, where he served on the House Committee on Ways and Means, House Armed Services Committee, House Committee on Foreign Affairs, House Committee on Ethics and House Committee on the Judiciary while also serving as a Deputy Whip for the Majority.

Griffin has served as an officer in the U.S. Army Reserve Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps for more than 27 years and currently holds the rank of colonel. In 2005, Griffin was mobilized to active duty as an Army prosecutor at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and served with the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) in Mosul, Iraq.

He is currently serving as the Commander of the 2d Legal Operations Detachment in New Orleans, Louisiana. His previous assignments include serving as the Commander of the 134th Legal Operations Detachment at Fort Liberty (née Bragg), North Carolina, and as a Senior Legislative Advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness at the Pentagon. Griffin earned a master’s degree in strategic studies as a Distinguished Honor Graduate from the U.S. Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania.

Griffin also served as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, and Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Director of Political Affairs for President George W. Bush; Special Assistant to Assistant Attorney General Michael Chertoff, Criminal Division, U.S. Department of Justice; Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Arkansas; Senior Investigative Counsel, Government Reform and Oversight Committee, U.S. House of Representatives; and Associate Independent Counsel, Office of Independent Counsel David M. Barrett, In re: HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros.

Griffin is a graduate of Magnolia High School, Hendrix College in Conway, and Tulane Law School in New Orleans. He attended graduate school at Oxford University. He is admitted to practice law in Arkansas (active) and Louisiana (inactive). Griffin lives in Little Rock with his wife, Elizabeth, a Camden native, and their three children.