Wednesday, June 19, 2013

ENDA Now Supported By Majority of U.S. Senate!

With the addition of Tom Carper of Delaware, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) now sports the public support of 51 Senators, a clear majority of the United States Senate. However, in order to become law, the measure will almost certainly need to clear a Republican filibuster, so the real level of support necessary for passage of this key legislative priority is 60 votes.

Astonishingly, ENDA has bipartisan support with moderate Republicans (Yes, Virginia, they do exist!) Mark Kirk of Illinois and Susan Collins of Maine supporting S. 815. However, there are still 5 members of the Democratic caucus who have not signed on:

The 5 Democrats who have not publicly said whether they oppose anti-LGBT discrimination are Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Bill Nelson of Florida, Tim Johnson of South Daoka, Joe Manchin and Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia. It must be noted that Machin and Pryor are two of the three remaining Democrats who do not support marriage equality (the third is Mary Landrieu of Louisiana). Oddly, Johnson and Nelson and Rockefeller all do support the right of gay people to marry the person they love but not the right of gay people to hold a job without getting fired! (Cognitive dissonance, much?)

There's no question the clamor around full civil rights for LGBT Americans is going to get louder as the month of June continues and the Supreme Court weights in on the issue in the Hollingsworth and Windsor cases by the end of the month.

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