MADISON, Wis. - U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson on Tuesday said it is "creepy" when transgender women are allowed to use women's bathrooms.
Johnson, a Republican from Wisconsin who is up for reelection in November, also objected to transgender women competing in women's sports. He made the comments during a virtual town hall on Tuesday, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.
His comments came after transgender woman Lia Thomas’ NCAA title win last week infuriated Republican politicians across the country and sparked anew a national debate about trans athletes being allowed to compete.
"You shouldn’t allow biological males to compete against girls," Johnson said. "I mean, it’s just disheartening to the girls."
Johnson added: "We shouldn’t allow biological males to be going into women’s bathrooms. It’s creepy. It’s just not good."
He made his comments after a town hall participant said it was offensive to him as a father to see transgender women competing in women’s swimming and entering women’s bathrooms.
"I think most Americans agree with you there," Johnson said. "There’s got to be a commonsense approach without discriminating, that type of thing, so everybody can live together in peace and harmony…It’s the left that keeps pushing these types of issues on us."
Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alex Lasry, who congratulated Thomas on Twitter after her win last week, said banning trans women from competing in women’s sports is transphobic.
Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, another Democratic Senate candidate, said if he’s elected he would fight to pass the Equality Act, which would prohibit discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation and gender identity in education, employment, bathrooms and other areas.