A biological male at Kearsarge Regional High School took first place in the girls high jump competition in February, beating every female in the New Hampshire Interscholastic Athletic Association (NHIAA) indoor track and field championship.

If a bill passed by the GOP-controlled state Senate Thursday becomes law, that won’t happen again.

HB 1205 requires the state’s public schools to designate sports teams as boys, girls, or co-ed for grades 5-12, and that only students designated as female at time of birth can play on girls teams. It passed on a party-line 13-10 vote.

[Republican Sen. Denise Ricciardi (R-Bedford) had a health emergency on the floor of the Senate and was taken to a hospital for treatment and missed most of Thursday’s votes.]

The bill, which has already passed the House, now goes to Gov. Chris Sununu’s desk for a signature. The governor has not explicitly said if he will sign the bill, but he told reporters on Wednesday he was open to supporting such a measure.

“I’d say it all comes down to an issue of fairness and safety,” Sununu said.

“I take those issues of fairness and safety extremely seriously, and I think they’re valid. I think the parents have a lot of concerns. I think the students and the individuals playing the sports have a lot of concerns.”

The passage of HB 1205 marked the start of a busy day in the Senate, featuring party-line votes on GOP legislation giving parents advance notice when sensitive topics like sexual health and gender identity are being discussed in school, and banning sex change operations for underage children.

The bill protecting all-girls sports teams from male would-be competitors would affect student-athletes from fifth grade through high school. Supporters of the legislation, like state Sen. Bill Gannon (R-Sandown), noted fifth grade is the time when male and female physical developments diverge, calling it an “unfair advantage” for biological boys.

State Sen. Debra Altschiller (D-Stratham) countered that only five transgender girls are competing on girls’ teams in New Hampshire public schools and claimed “there is no evidence that transgender girls have a categorical advantage when competing against cisgender girls.”

In fact, there is overwhelming data showing males have physical advantages over females in many commonly-played sports ranging from basketball to swimming.

“This bill and others like it are meant to create a panic over transgender people, particularly trans girls,” Altschiller argued. “This bill says nothing about girls playing on boys sports teams, which happens all across the state.”

Sen. Donovan Fenton (D-Keene) suggested the law would require “male coaches to inspect the genitals” of girls hoping to compete on a school sports team.

“Can parents be present? Or will administrators be going to students directly and asking them in private to pull down their pants?” Fenton asked.

Despite Fenton’s claims, the law merely asks athletes to provide a birth certificate which, along with a medical exam, is already required for most students to enroll in a New Hampshire public school.

“This bill evens the playing field for girls and allows only women to compete in women’s sports. It is unfair to have biological men competing against women due to their physical advantages. These differences threaten to rob scholarships and opportunities from women, and we cannot continue to let that happen,” Sen. Ruth Ward (R-Stoddard) said in a statement after the vote.

Senate Democrats, however, released a statement repeating their debunked insinuation that male coaches may be peering into the pants of student athletes.

“The vague wording and lack of explanation as to what qualifies as ‘other evidence’ implies that a child as young as 10 years old and up to 18 years old may have to submit to some form of physical examination of their genitalia to prove their gender, with or without their parents present,” the Democrats’ statement read.

“This is horrifying, offensive and entirely unacceptable.”

It’s also not true, Senate Republicans repeatedly reminded their Democratic colleagues.

If Sununu signs the bill into law, New Hampshire will become the 25th state to protect girls-only sports from biological males.