Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, has appealed a ruling that declared his executive order protecting LGBT workers unconstitutional.

Edwards' order, issued in April 2016, prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity among state agencies and contractors doing business with the state. Religious organizations are exempt.

Republican Attorney General Jeff Landry challenged Edwards' order, saying that he had exceeded his authority in issuing it.

A state district judge and a state appeal court sided with Landry.

Edwards' order “goes beyond a mere policy statement or directive to fulfill law, because there is no current state or federal law specifically outlining anti-discrimination laws concerning and/or defining sexual orientation or gender identity,” the appeal court wrote.

Edwards responded to the ruling in a statement. “Discrimination in state government and by state contractors is wrong, makes us weaker, and is bad for business and economic development. Even President Trump agrees, as he has kept in place a federal executive order which is virtually identical to the order I put in place."

On Friday, Edwards announced that he had appealed the ruling to the state Supreme Court in New Orleans.