Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards has
filed a lawsuit against Attorney General Jeff Landry for blocking
state legal contracts that include LGBT protections.
Edwards, a Democrat, issued an
executive order earlier this year that requires all state contracts
to include language prohibiting discrimination in the workplace based
on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Times-Picayune, Edwards filed the lawsuit after meeting with
Landry, a Republican, on the issue.
“He basically told me that if I
wanted him to approve those contracts that I would have to sue him,”
Edwards told reporters on Friday. “So, I'm obliging him on that.”
At his own press conference, Landry
said that he believes that he has the authority to block the
contracts because he was “defending the Legislature and their
priorities and their wishes,” a reference to lawmakers' repeated
failure to approve such protections.
“It's unfortunate that the governor
continues to want to push for a protected class that the Legislature
has six times – with bipartisan support – rejected,” he said.
The governor's office estimates Landry
has blocked around 40 contracts over the language.