Over 200 Congressional and House Democrats have joined together and are sending a letter to President Obama calling on him to sign an executive order banning federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT workers.
The move comes as the White House keeps maintaining that Obama’s preferred path is passage of Employment Non-Discrimination Act into law is through Congress rather than signing the executive order and the LGBT community continues to push for the executive order in the wake of last fall’s Senate passage of the ENDA, which is now stuck in the GOP controlled House and is likely to go nowhere.
The bill that would ban most private employers who have Government contracts from anti-LGBT discrimination.
The nearly 200 congressional Democrats write, “We are committed to doing all that we can in Congress to get ENDA to your desk this year; however, there is no reason you cannot immediately act by taking this important step.”
The effort was led by Sen. Jeff Merkley and Rep. Jared Polis, with support from Sens. Tom Harkin and Tammy Baldwin and Reps. Michael Michaud, David Cicilline, Sean Patrick Maloney, Mark Pocan, Kyrsten Sinema, Mark Takano, Frank Pallone, Lois Capps, Diana DeGette, Joe Garcia, Raul Grijalva, Mike Honda, Barbara Lee, Jerrold Nadler, and Adam Schiff.
The proposed order follows Obama’s agreement in a 2008 candidate questionnaire that, if elected president, he would support a nondiscrimination policy for LGBT employees of federal contractors. Advocates and lawmakers have been pressing Obama to model the policy off an existing executive order, Executive Order 11246, that bans federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.