Is White House Reconsidering Executive Order on LGBT Workplace Protections?

At a White House Press Conference on Monday, prior to the 61-30 Senate vote which advanced the Employee Non-Discrimination Act, Press Secretary Jay Carney may suggested a change in thinking on an executive order in the Act's future. Carney responded optimistically about the impending Senate vote when questioned by the AP's Julie Pace, and he also stressed that Congress's passing of ENDA would be "preferable" to an executive order, language that differed from that he had used in the past.

JaycarneyReports Chris Johnson at the Washington Blade:

“What we’ve said about this is two things,” Carney said. “One, the preferable and better path has been through Congress because that would be inclusive. An executive order that addresses federal contractors obviously would not be inclusive; it would not extend beyond federal contracts. So, we’re focused on getting ENDA through Congress. When I used to answer questions about an executive order by saying that, there was great skepticism that it would get this far, and we have come to a moment where quite likely, in fact possible, that the Senate will pass this, so we’re going to keep pressing ahead.”

Carney use of the past tense in his response — “what we’ve said about this” and “when I used to answer questions about an executive order” — suggests that the White House position that an executive order won’t happen at this time is being reconsidered.

Immediately after the briefing, the Washington Blade shouted out to Carney an inquiry on whether the president is now open to signing the executive order. Carney gave no response.

As of now, the White House clearly hopes for congressional cooperation in passing the long-awaited legislation. Do you think that President Obama would sign an executive order if Boehner and the GOP should succeed again at stifling workplace protections for LGBT Americans?


  1. Gregory In Seattle says

    It looks to me like yet another case of the President taking action only AFTER he’s checked to see which way the wind was blowing. I have no doubt whatsoever that Obama would have remained silent — as usual — had the cloture vote failed.

  2. Perry says

    Just another notch to add to the belt of this ever growing imperial presidency. Executive orders should rarely be used but this president loves using it as a way around the Congress. Imagine if Republican presidents used this device as often as Obama did. Democrats would have their panties in a knot and screaming bloody murder (as they should be).

  3. NotSafeForWork says

    Perry is just another idiot who spouts info as if they were facts. Sadly, the sheeple readily believe this rhetoric about the “black guy”.

    Fact: Obama has issued 163 EOs. Bush II issued 291 and Clinton 364. Obama has issued 3 less than Bush I. Obama’s average across his term is less than his predecessors.

    STFU Perry.

  4. Gregory In Seattle says

    @Perry – The president heads the Executive Branch. The Executive Branch consists of the departments and bureaus authorized by Congress to oversee the execution of federal law. An Executive Order is nothing more than the President as Chief Executive issuing a formal policy change to one or more of the agencies within the Executive Branch.

    This is basic high school civics, which you seem not to have passed.

  5. I wont grow up says

    No one in this administration should be trusted especially the “Dear Leader”. He lied about healthcare and he’ll lie about this. Then he will lie about lying.

  6. says

    @Perry/Jason: Before you speak check your facts. President Obama has been very restrained with executive orders, being philosophically opposed to them, too restrained many argue. Why would you, a gay man, be opposed to him acting on this? Part of his job description.

    Executive orders can be undone, one legitimate reason Obama has for opposing them. It would be better to pass ENDA via the Congress, but given the wingnut Republican control of the House, it’s not likely to happen otherwise. (Just as the repeal of DADT and DOMA Section 3 would not have happened with a Republican in the White House.)

  7. NotSafeForWork says

    @I wont grow up

    I agree with you. The regime of Kim Jong-il was very corrupt. He continually lied to his people and to the world right up to the day of his death. It’s a wonder they refer to him as Dear Leader. His son, Kim Jong Un is even worse with lavish amenities while his people starve.

    The democratic system of the USA and especially the leadership of Barack Obama should serve as an example to the heathens in North Korea. You are correct in that just like the Dear Leader, the Supreme Leader of North Korea and his minions must not be trusted either.

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