With Senate vote expected, president urges passage of ENDA


President Barack Obama, in an op-ed published on Nov. 4 on HuffingtonPost.com, encouraged Congress to send him legislation protecting LGBT people from employment discrimination.

The bill is the Employment Non-Discrimination, which could be voted on in the Senate this week.

In the op-ed, Obama said that “millions of LGBT Americans go to work every day fearing that, without any warning, they could lose their jobs — not because of anything they’ve done, but simply because of who they are.

“It’s offensive. It’s wrong. And it needs to stop, because in the United States of America, who you are and who you love should never be a fireable offense.”

He continued, “That’s why Congress needs to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, also known as ENDA, which would provide strong federal protections against discrimination, making it explicitly illegal to fire someone because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. This bill has strong bipartisan support and the support of a vast majority of Americans. It ought to be the law of the land.”

ENDA has 54 co-sponsors in the Senate and at least 59 “yes” votes.

The president, in the op-ed, said, “I urge the Senate to vote yes on ENDA and the House of Representatives to do the same. Several Republican Senators have already voiced their support, as have a number of Republicans in the House. If more members of Congress step up, we can put an end to this form of discrimination once and for all.”