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May 27, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) – Bruce “Caitlyn” Jenner surprised many weeks ago by coming out against letting biological males compete in female athletic programs, despite his self-identification as a “trans woman.” But the Republican candidate for governor of California has now partially walked back his stance.

“This is a question of fairness,” Jenner, a Olympic gold medal-winning decathlete and pop culture figure who “transitioned” in 2015, told TMZ in early May. “That’s why I oppose biological boys who are trans competing in girls sports in school. It just isn’t fair, and we have to protect girls' sports in our schools.”

On Wednesday, however, Jenner moderated his stance during a Fox News appearance, the Daily Caller reported.

“What I would do as governor, I would put together a commission,” he told hosts Bill Hemmer and Dana Perino. “Trans women compete in the Olympics, they compete in the NCAA, but when it gets down to the high school level, there’s no guide rules, there’s no rules and regulations how they can.”

“And trans women, who are truly trans, who at a very young age, you know, started proper medical treatment, they’ve grown up as girls, of course they should be able to compete in girls’ sports,” he continued. “But yes, some guy who hasn’t done any therapy, hasn’t done anything, there has to be a review board.”

“Such a small issue,” he added. “It’s like a non-issue that’s out there. And I would be surprised if there’s 30 trans athletes in the entire state.”

Jenner announced his candidacy to challenge embattled Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom last month, sparking a debate about the direction of the GOP and conservative movement, between those who argue Jenner’s gender confusion is moot in a state a traditional Republican could not win anyway, and those who argue the presumed futility of California’s deep-blue status is all the more reason not to risk diluting conservative principles by endorsing him.

Many of Jenner’s defenders argued that his gender confusion should be overlooked in light of his conservatism on other issues – an argument undermined by this latest walkback:

LGBT activists claim it’s “discriminatory” to reserve female competitive sports for actual females, and conservatives argue that forcing girls to compete against boys deprives the former of recognition and scholarship opportunities that were originally instituted to advance girls academically and professionally. Further, scientific research indicates that testosterone suppression does not eliminate all the physical advantages that come with male physiology. 

In a paper published by the Journal of Medical Ethics, New Zealand researchers found that “healthy young men (do) not lose significant muscle mass (or power) when their circulating testosterone levels were reduced to (below International Olympic Committee guidelines) for 20 weeks,” and “indirect effects of testosterone” on factors such as bone structure, lung volume, and heart size “will not be altered by hormone therapy”; therefore, “the advantage to transwomen (biological men) afforded by the (International Olympic Committee) guidelines is an intolerable unfairness.”

Other Republicans running against Newsom so far include former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, businessman John Cox, and former Congressman Doug Ose. Former Trump administration intelligence chief and Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell, who is gay, has also been floated as a potential GOP candidate.