Attorney General calls North Carolina LGBT law 'state-sponsored discrimination'

Loretta Lynch, Photo: CNN / MGN

The U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced a lawsuit filed against North Carolina's controversial "bathroom law."

"Today we are filing a federal civil rights lawsuit," she said in response to North Carolina's decision to sue the Justice Department.

"They created state-sponsored discrimination," said Lynch.

"This is about the dignity and respect we afford our fellow citizens."

She continued, "all it does is harm innocent Americans."

"Let us instead learn from our history, and avoid repeating the mistakes of the past."

The Justice Department lawsuit seeks a court order declaring that the law's provisions that apply to multiple-occupancy bathrooms or changing facilities "discriminate on the basis of sex."

RELATED | North Carolina governor leads lawsuit over LGBT rights

The announcement comes the same day Gov. Pat McCrory's administration filed a lawsuit against th federal government that limits protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

McCrory wants the sweeping law, which limits protections for gay, lesbian, transgender and bisexual people, kept in place.

He says says his lawsuit asks a federal court to clarify what the law actually says with billions in federal aid at stake.

According to The Associated Press, "The Justice Department had set a deadline of Monday for McCrory to report whether he would refuse to enforce the last that took effect in March."

The DOJ was not specific about the "law enforcement action" ahead of the press conference.

Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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