Today, the U.S. Senate is expected to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), a bill which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, but the bill is not expected to make its way to the President’s desk. Speaker John Boehner announced today that he opposed ENDA, leaving the impression that the bill is dead on arrival in the House of Representatives.
In California and 28 other states which already prohibit discrimination against gay workers, ENDA would have little effect. But in the remaining 21 states, it remains legal to discriminate against employees or applicants because of their sexual orientation.
Strangely, the Speaker’s office issued a press release stating that he “believed this is covered by existing law.” But, of course, Title VII does not prohibit discrimination because of sexual orientation. And, in the past, Boehner stated that he was opposed to the bill because he felt it would “lead to endless, excessive litigation” and “drastically weaken religious freedom in the workplace.”