SB 262, a bill offering protection against discrimination to lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender individuals in housing and workplace environments not brought up for discussion Monday on the Senate floor, effectively killing it for 2013 because of lack of votes and issues with the Mormon Church.
Utah Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, R-Sandy, said the bill didn’t have the votes, so it was wise to spend the day focused on bills that potentially could be forwarded to the House. He said The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was one of several parties involved in discussions on the measure.
Sen. Steve Urquhart who sponsored the bill called news conference late Monday, Urquhart expressed frustration the bill didn’t come up for a vote, but said he has seen significant progress on the issue. He said in his 13 years in the Legislature, he has seen a lot of issues that are entrenched, but he said he sees movement on the equity issue.
Sen. Jim Dabakis, D-Salt Lake City, who is gay, added “The votes just weren’t there, but the work continues one senator at a time, one vote at a time. We really did come this close. We just didn’t close the gap. We’ll begin in a couple of weeks to start sitting down and see if we can finally come to a conclusion with the LDS Church,” Dabakis said.
Hasn’t anyone in this country ever heard of “separation of church and state” or “cult and state” in this case.