Natalie Cline announces she's running for re-election to state school board

Campaign announced on USBE's deadline for her resignation
Posted at 7:04 PM, Feb 19, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-19 23:44:27-05

SALT LAKE CITY — A controversial member of the Utah State Board of Education is running for re-election — even after she was censured and asked to resign from her position by her fellow board members.

Natalie Cline has been denounced by colleagues, lawmakers and more after making comments on Facebook that falsely targeted a girl's basketball player for being transgender.

The board itself voted 14-0 to formally censure Cline last week, along with calling for her resignation and stripping her of her committee appointments. The Utah State Legislature also censured her but stopped short of impeachment (which they have the power to do).

While Cline was already on file to run for re-election, she made an announcement via Facebook on Monday — . which is also the exact date by which the Board requested her to resign. She has given no indications that she intends to resign, and House Speaker Mike Schultz said last week that she was "dug in" and refusing to step down.

Among other campaign promises, Cline said in Monday's announcement that she will work to prevent schools from becoming "medical and mental health institutions & full-service social welfare community centers."

Cline, an outspoken social conservative, has been condemned widely for her post she made insinuating that a high school student-athlete is transgender. She is not. As a result of the social media post, the girl's family has received harassment that continues to this day. At one point, the girl was receiving security protection.

So far, two people have declared their candidacy to run against her: Amanda Bollinger challenging her in the Republican primary, and Will Shiflett of the Democratic Party.