President Barack Obama on Monday called passage in the Senate of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) part of a “return to common sense” on Capitol Hill.

Obama made his remarks while addressing an Organizing For Action (OFA) audience of roughly 50 people gathered in the dining room of Decanter, the restaurant inside the St. Regis hotel.

ENDA, which seeks to prohibit workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, cleared a major hurdle in the Senate on Monday.

(Related: Gay protections bill ENDA clears cloture hurdle in Senate.)

“Slowly, surely, we're starting to see a some common sense starting to prevail,” Obama said. “It hasn't quite gotten over the hump, but you're starting to see it in the Senate in particular where we had already gotten the vote on immigration reform. Bipartisan vote, it's ready to go. We still need help from the House, but there's still an opportunity. We're seeing it perhaps tonight on the ENDA vote, which, you know, non-discrimination around sexual orientations where we think we'll probably get this done in the Senate. Again, there's going to be resistance in the House. But the more that we can continue at a grassroots level to speak out on behalf of the values that we care about, they're mainstream values, the values that 60, 70, 80% of the country believe in. They're also values that young people and future generations believe in.”

“And so I want everybody to understand that change in America's always been slow, and sometimes we take a step back for every two steps we take forward. But inexorably, the idea of a more tolerant, more prosperous, country that offers more opportunity to more people, that's an idea that the vast majority of Americans believe in.”