House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, a Democrat from New York, on Wednesday called for passage of the Equality Act in response to President Donald Trump's plan to “gut” an Obama-era LGBT order.

In 2014, President Barack Obama signed an executive order barring federal contractor from discrimination against LGBT workers, expanding a previous order that included race, sex and other characteristics.

The U.S. Department of Labor on Thursday published a proposed rule change that would expand the order's religious exemptions to include “not just churches but employers that are organized for a religious purpose.”

LGBT rights groups said that the change would effectively allow for-profit companies to refuse employment based on the sexual orientation or gender identity of an applicant.

Alphonso David, the new president of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest LGBT rights group, said in a statement that the proposed rule change will “gut existing protections for LGBTQ people, women and religious minorities.”

David also said that it “directly contradicts” President Donald Trump's earlier promise not to reverse Obama's order.

“The Trump administration needs to withdraw this proposed regulation and stop these attacks on LGBTQ people,” David said.

Following early reports about the rule change, Nadler called on the Senate to act by passing the Equality Act, a federal LGBT protections bill that earlier this year passed the House. In his statement, Nadler condemned Trump's “plan to gut a key federal nondiscrimination protection.”

“Today, the Trump Administration once again demonstrated its hostility towards LGBTQ Americans, minorities, and women by announcing its intention to effectively gut a key federal nondiscrimination protection,” Nadler said. “This is yet more evidence that we need to enact H.R. 5, the ‘Equality Act,’ which the House passed with bipartisan support earlier this year. The Equality Act would explicitly provide broad federal protections against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in key areas of life and ensure that religious liberty is used as a shield to protect religious minorities, not as a sword to discriminate against LGBTQ people, other minorities, and women. The Senate must pass the Equality Act immediately.”

In an email to the Washington Blade, White House Deputy Press Secretary Judd Deere insisted that the proposed rule change would not undermine Trump's promise to the LGBT community.

“In no way does today’s announcement by the Department of Labor undermine the president’s promise and commitment to the LGBTQ community,” Deere said. “The proposed rule will continue to responsibly protect religious freedom and members of the LGBTQ community from discrimination.”