News & Politics

Washington State GOP Blocks Bill to Ban Abusive “Gay Conversion” Therapy Including Electric Shocks and Ice Baths

Sadly, the bill is likely dead.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

Yesterday, Washington state Democrats moved to ban so-called “gay conversion” therapy, focusing on abusive practices like electric shock and ice baths, but were blocked by Republican lawmakers.

The Washington state senate voted 22-27 to refuse to consider the bill. ““I am appalled that the Republican majority killed legislation to protect kids from electric shock, ice baths, and other physical and emotional abuse, simply because they’re gay. We need to end conversion therapy once and for all,” said sponsor Senator Marko Liias(D).

The bill had originally cleared the Senate back in March, but after changes were made in the House version, Republicans now oppose it, and are insisting on their own changes. The GOP reportedly was upset at efforts to ban  “talk conversion therapy” – which has no scientific basis, as there is just no proof someone can simply be talked out of a sexual orientation.

The bill is now “likely dead,” according to the local press, as only five days remain in the legislative session. Thanks to the GOP's hangup over one provision in the bill, even the most extreme forms of gay conversion therapy will sadly remain legal in Washington state.

 

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Zaid Jilani is an AlterNet staff writer. Follow @zaidjilani on Twitter.