By\u00a0Allyson Waller\r\nThe Texas House has the votes to pass legislation that would restrict transgender student athlete participation in school sports, House Speaker\u00a0Dade Phelan\u00a0said in an interview at The Texas Tribune Festival on Friday.\r\nThree times this year \u2014 in the regular session and in two subsequent special sessions \u2014 legislation targeting transgender student athletes sailed through the Senate only to falter in the House.\r\nIn the TribFest interview, Phelan noted that House members have signaled their support by signing on as authors. In the last special session, 75 representatives signed on as either sponsors or authors of the House\u2019s version of the transgender sports bill. The House requires a majority of members to pass a bill, which is 76 members.\r\n\u201cOne author, in particular, has close to 80 coauthors on the bill, so the votes are there on the House floor,\u201d Phelan said.\r\nLegislators convened last week for a third special session to take up priority items on Gov. Greg Abbott\u2019s agenda, which is primarily focused on redistricting but also includes the legislation requiring student athletes in K-12 public schools to play on sports teams that correspond with their assigned sex listed on their birth certificate at or near the time of their birth. The legislation, which has been continuously opposed by LGBTQ advocates, targets transgender youth, barring them from playing on teams that are consistent with their gender identity.\r\nThe University Interscholastic League of Texas, which governs high school athletics in Texas, already uses birth certificates to confirm the gender of students. However, it will also accept modified birth certificates that may have been changed to align with a student\u2019s gender identity.\r\nOn Wednesday, the Senate passed its version of the legislation again,\u00a0Senate Bill 3, authored by state Sen.\u00a0Charles Perry, R-Lubbock.\r\nPhelan said he does not yet have assurances whether the bill will make it through committee to get to a House floor vote.\r\nIn the regular session, House Public Education Committee Chair\u00a0Harold Dutton, D-Houston, advanced the bill to the floor for a vote, but in the most recent special session he blocked it.\r\n\u201cThe votes are there on the House floor to probably pass the legislation as it stands now,\u201d Phelan said. \u201cIt will go through a committee process, it will go through [the] calendars [committee] like everything else. Like any other piece of legislation, it\u2019ll be incumbent upon the author to make the case throughout the process, and we\u2019ll see if it makes it to the House floor.\u201d\r\nIn previous years, Phelan has\u00a0publicly denounced legislation targeting LGBTQ Texans, which helped gain him favor with Democrats as he made his case for Speaker of the House. During the last days of this year\u2019s regular session, however,\u00a0he signaled support for legislation that would target transgender youth.\r\nThis is not the first time legislation directed at transgender Texans has spilled over to a special session. In 2017,\u00a0the so-called \u201cbathroom bill,\u201d\u00a0which was a major legislative priority for Lt. Gov.\u00a0Dan Patrick\u00a0and would\u2019ve limited transgender people\u2019s use of certain public facilities, failed to become law during the regular session or a summer special session. Other controversial legislation, such as permitless carry that allows Texans to carry a firearm without a permit, have repeatedly come up during legislative sessions over the years as well.\r\n\u201cYou go back to permitless carry, it took a decade to get it actually to the House floor,\u201d Phelan said. \u201cSo, sometimes these issues that are very controversial take more than one session.\u201d\r\nThis story originally published by the Texas Tribune.