Proposed “bathroom bill” has already cost Texas $200M

LGBT+ business advocacy group Texas Competes’ new report finds that the state has experienced $200 million worth of bad publicity as a result of its consideration of a “bathroom bill” – before the bill has even passed. The legislative session in Texas ends on May 29th, and the bill, which is similar to North Carolina’s controversial HB2, may not pass in time, despite the strong support of Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick.

Texas Competes monitored news coverage of the bill in and out of Texas, and using a media algorithm determined how many of the more than 25,000 articles were positive, negative, or neutral. Nearly three-quarters of the coverage was negative, and only 2 percent of the “positive” coverage, “largely described efforts by performing artists, businesses and sports organizations and others to protest ‘bathroom bills.”

Though not as far reaching as North Carolina’s controversial H.B. 2, the bill takes many of its cues from the the portion of the law which stated that individuals must use the public bathroom consistent with the gender they were assigned at birth. The total economic loss to the state of North Carolina before a partial repeal of the bill totaled $4 billion.