Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett on Tuesday endorsed a bill which seeks to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation in the areas of employment, housing and public accommodations.

Corbett told The Inquirer that he was “coming out in support” of the bill.

“I've had people come and talk to me about how they were discriminated against,” Corbett said. “The federal government has anti-discrimination laws. I believed they covered it.”

Corbett, a former state attorney general and a Republican, said that he was unaware that discrimination based on sexual orientation was not prohibited by federal law.

The 64-year-old Corbett earlier this year sued to block a county clerk from issuing additional marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples. Corbett's office is also defending the state's marriage laws in several legal challenges.

Ted Martin, executive director of Equality Pennsylvania, called Corbett's endorsement “remarkably big news.”

“His leadership will move the issue forward in a way that is long overdue,” Martin told the paper.

The non-discrimination bills introduced in both houses earlier this year have failed to clear their respective committees.

Corbett apologized in October after he compared same-sex marriage to incest.

(Related: Gov. Tom Corbett apologizes for comparing gay marriage to incest.)

In discussing his endorsement with The Inquirer, Corbett reiterated his opposition to marriage equality.