Our queer political dreams may come crashing down. One day after legislators stalled a planned vote, The Hill reports that it may be freshman Democrats who are holding up the non-inclusive H.R. 3865:
Reps. Tim Walz (Minn.) and Ron Klein (Fla.), leaders of the class of freshman Democrats, carried a message to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Tuesday that their fellow first-term lawmakers did not want to vote on an amendment extending civil rights to transgender employees.
House Education and Labor panel Chairman George Miller (D-Calif.), whose committee passed the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, said he told the freshman lawmakers at their Wednesday breakfast with Pelosi that the amendment did not have the votes to pass and would not be brought to the House floor.
Young politicians are afraid to vote against trans rights, but are also afraid that by not voting, they’ll doom our nation’s first gay-specific legislation.
Gay City News‘ Paul Schindler writes:
Rumors circulated on Capitol Hill that, in the face of growing numbers of Democrats unhappy with the prospects of voting either way on the bill as now written – to leave the trans community behind or to defeat the first gay rights vote ever held – leadership was weighing the option of pulling the bill altogether for the time being to regroup.
Schindler also says that House majority leader Steny Hoyer hopes to reschedule the vote for next week. Barney Frank, however, has heard nothing of the sort.
So, just to reiterate: politicians are more worried about their next election than thousands upon thousands of gay activists, politicians and journalists who oppose HR 3865. God fucking bless America!