Barack Obama | ENDA | News

Is Obama Considering Executive Action Banning LGBT Discrimination in the Workplace?

Business Insider points out that Obama is set to make a "pivot" in his State of the Union address tomorrow night:

B_obamaSenior White House advisers have laid out the key themes of President Barack Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday night — income inequality, job growth, and helping the long-term unemployed in a still-stagnating economy.

But perhaps the most important part of Obama's speech will be a more forceful outline than ever of how he plans to address those and other items on his agenda. He will say how he plans to get things done himself if Congress won't work with him — through executive action, or, as he and his advisers like to put it, through a "pen and a phone."

For the White House, it's a "year of action."

Currently, people can still be fired for being gay in 29 states. LGBT advocates have long been pushing for an executive order since legislation that would forbid anti-LGBT discrimination in the workplace (ENDA) has been stagnating in Congress for years, and isn't going anywhere fast.

Although the Senate passed ENDA in November, House Speaker John Boehner refuses to bring it up for a vote. That month, Boehner reiterated his assertion that there is no need for such legislation and it would be the basis for "frivolous lawsuits."

President Obama has expressed his frustration over House obstruction of ENDA, saying, following the Senate vote:

"One party in one house of Congress should not stand in the way of millions of Americans who want to go to work each day and simply be judged by the job they do. Now is the time to end this kind of discrimination in the workplace, not enable it."

It seems that ENDA would fit nicely in the President's "year of action" agenda.

Will we see a nod toward it in tomorrow night's State of the Union address, with NBA player Jason Collins sitting in the box with the First Lady? Wait and see.

Feed This post's comment feed

Comments

  1. cross your fingers!!

    Posted by: Andrea | Jan 27, 2014 2:11:00 PM


  2. Folks, please stop being so short-sighted! When a President, ANY President, can by-pass the Constitutionally-appointed system by which things are supposed to get done via Executive fiat (skipping over Congress), then we are going down the road of a dictatorship.

    You might cheer now because it seems to benefit the LGBT community, but by this current President's allies turning a blind-eye to this abuse of power, precedence continues to be created so that future Presidents can increasingly rule by fiat. If Congress doesn't agree, or is too slow, then is it okay to just by-pass Congress? That is VERY dangerous, folks. VERY dangerous.

    We must oppose this, even if in the short-term it benefits us. Because in the long-term, it will hurt ALL of us. Please, let's not be so short-sighted here. Work to change hearts and minds over time. It takes work to get the branches of government to agree to things, but it's that way for a reason. We must be PATIENTLY working towards a goal, not short-circuiting a process meant to ultimately safeguard the liberties and freedoms of all Americans.

    Posted by: Jon | Jan 27, 2014 2:23:00 PM


  3. wait a sec, mr. speaker...if there's no need for the law because protections are already in place, then why would there be any increase in lawsuits if it were passed?

    the position of the speaker makes no sense, and he knows it - not bringing enda to the house floor for a vote makes me suspect it's because he's afraid it might pass, which could anger the bigots in the gop base - an even worse reason than denying a need for the legislation.

    without a legitimate reason for one half of one branch of government to deny a vote, an executive order sounds like a good compromise. if they have any issues, whey can sue and let the supreme court decide.

    Posted by: northalabama | Jan 27, 2014 3:22:19 PM


  4. Jon, you make it sound like Obama is the first to command an executive order!

    Many have been very patient and many have been wronged in the process so I could not disagree more strongly with you....or Boehner.

    Posted by: Roger | Jan 27, 2014 4:02:12 PM


  5. Obama SHOULD use Executive Order for ENDA. It is within his Constitutional authority to do so. Both Reagan and Bush used more EO than Obama in their first terms. If Congress is going to continue to drag their feet in the hopes of dragging down this President, I hope he stops waiting for them to cooperate and moves us ahead. I, for one, am tired of waiting.

    Posted by: Jim | Jan 27, 2014 5:16:08 PM


  6. Where is the president granted this power?

    Posted by: James Peron | Jan 27, 2014 5:16:10 PM


  7. "the Senate passed ENDA in November"

    We need another name for legislation that elevates religious rights over equality, thereby eviscerating the content of the original idea.

    Posted by: Randy | Jan 27, 2014 5:39:46 PM


  8. So like...is this rumor mongering or is there actual verified information pointing to Obama issuing an executive order?

    Posted by: Francis | Jan 27, 2014 5:46:37 PM


  9. John sweetie, you need to do some research on executive orders. Constitutionally sound executive orders (per SCOTUS) derive their authority as expressed or implied by federal law. It isn't unreasonable to deduce with generous federal anti-discrimination laws already on the books that banning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is an implied obligation.

    I see where you are coming from; restraint is respectable, but inappropriate in this case.

    Posted by: Isaac | Jan 27, 2014 6:33:34 PM


  10. John sweetie, you need to do some research on executive orders. Constitutionally sound executive orders (per SCOTUS) derive their authority as expressed or implied by federal law. It isn't unreasonable to deduce with generous federal anti-discrimination laws already on the books that banning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is an implied obligation.

    I see where you are coming from; restraint is respectable, but inappropriate in this case.

    Posted by: Isaac | Jan 27, 2014 6:33:35 PM


Post a comment







Trending


« «‘Good Luck Charlie’ Features Disney Channel’s First Gay Couple - VIDEO« «