All ENDA Eyes On Senate

Now that the Employment Non-Discrimination Act has passed through the House’s halls, it’s up to Ted Kennedy and his Senatorial pals to deal with the non-inclusive legislation.

In light of yesterday’s bittersweet victory, Kennedy released the following statement:

Last night the House passed the Employment Non-Discrimination Act with a strong bipartisan vote… Although the bill is narrower than many of us had hoped, the House action is still a main step in the long journey toward full civil rights for every American.

In the Senate, I will work to move the Employment Non-Discrimination Act this Congress. The bill that the House passed is being held at the desk and I’m working with leadership to move this bill forward as quickly as possible.

Senator and presidential candidate Barack Obama has already co-sponsored the bill and an Obama spokesperson said again yesterday that the Senator will push the ENDA vote:

Obama has supported fully inclusive protections since his days in the Illinois legislature, when he sponsored a bill to outlaw workplace discrimination that expressly included both sexual orientation and gender identity. Senator Obama thanks leaders in the House who worked to pass their version today, and will cosponsor Senator Kennedy’s bill in the Senate to achieve this goal.

Another potentially presidential Senator, Mrs. Hillary Clinton, has also said she would support ENDA, but has not specifically addressed the trans exclusion. In fact, she used her support as a dig at the current administration:

As President, I will end the divisive politics of this administration and work to renew the promise of fairness for all Americans. This means supporting equal rights for gay and lesbian couples, ending Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and allowing patriotic Americans to serve their country, and finally signing into law the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and hate crimes legislation.

Kennedy ended his speech by reminding listeners and readers what America’s all about:

America stands for justice for all.Congress must make clear that when we say “all” we mean all. America will never be America until we do.

Our government’s meant to protect all citizens? Could have fooled us. Now, Teddy Boy, go on out there and bust some skulls.