North Carolina

Federal agencies won’t hold up money amid NC anti-trans law battle

FILE - In this May 9, 2016 file photo, North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory speaks during a news conference in Raleigh, N.C. Four years ago, North Carolina was the one that got away for Democrats, the only battleground state President Barack Obama didn’t carry in his resounding re-election triumph. Now, with Donald Trump at the top of the Republican ticket and state GOP officials embroiled in a contentious fight over transgender rights, Democrats see a ripe opportunity for likely nominee Hillary Clinton to grab North Carolina back in November, as well as boost her party’s prospects in competitive races for Senate and governor.

FILE - In this May 9, 2016 file photo, North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory speaks during a news conference in Raleigh, N.C. Four years ago, North Carolina was the one that got away for Democrats, the only battleground state President Barack Obama didn’t carry in his resounding re-election triumph. Now, with Donald Trump at the top of the Republican ticket and state GOP officials embroiled in a contentious fight over transgender rights, Democrats see a ripe opportunity for likely nominee Hillary Clinton to grab North Carolina back in November, as well as boost her party’s prospects in competitive races for Senate and governor. AP Photo/Gerry Broome, File

WASHINGTON — The White House says federal agencies won’t withhold money for North Carolina while a legal fight plays out over the state’s law on gay, lesbian and transgender rights.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest says an administration review is now on hold about whether the law could force federal agencies to freeze money for health, education or housing programs. He says the agencies will wait for the courts to determine whether the law violates the Civil Rights Act.

The Justice Department and North Carolina’s governor sued each other on Monday. At issue is a state law that says transgender people must use public bathrooms that correspond to the sex on their birth certificate.

President Barack Obama has said he believes the law is “wrong and should be overturned.”

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