A bill that seeks to end workplace
discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity
cleared a critical hurdle in the Senate on Monday, with 61 members
voting in favor of moving to a final vote. A vote on final passage
could come as early as tonight.
With all 55 Senate Democrats backing
the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), passage hinged on
On Monday, Nevada Senator Dean Heller
announced his support, making him the critical 60th vote
needed to avoid a filibuster on the Senate floor.
Heller said in a statement that he was
backing the measure because “discrimination must not be tolerated
under any circumstance.”
The legislation looks to be
dead-on-arrival in the House after Speaker John Boehner, a Republican
from Ohio, reiterated his opposition.
Boehner “believes this legislation
will increase frivolous litigation and cost American jobs, especially
small business jobs,” a spokesman said Monday.
On Sunday, President
Barack Obama called on Congress to approve ENDA.