It’s not just Rep. Barney Frank who has the power to see the future. Rep. Jared Polis, the Coloradan Democrat (who’s sponsoring the Student Non-Discrimination Act ), says the Employment Non-Discrimination Act is going to pass in just a few moments, in what’s perhaps the most casual revelation that, uh, there’s movement on the issue.
“We have the votes to pass ENDA in the House and we hope to bring it before the committee I serve on – the Education Labor Committee – within the month – by the end of April,” he tells Frontiers‘s Karen Ocamb. “And then, once it passes the committee, it shouldn’t take more than a couple of weeks – a week or two – to schedule it for the floor. It’s just a scheduling matter. We think we would have passed it by now if it wasn’t for healthcare taking up much of the workload of our committee. I don’t know about the Senate – but in the House, we expect to pass out substantially. It has substantial support. The Senate requires 60 votes so it’s a matter of getting some Republican moderates to support it.”
That’s great news! And certainly, for being so tied in to Washington, and collecting tens of millions of dollars every year with the promise it will lobby lawmakers and work with them to push ahead legislation just like this, the Human Rights Campaign knows all about this time line, right? Well, we looked here and here, and couldn’t find anything. Can someone please forward this post to the office of Joe Solmonese? Because he probably wants to alert his 750,000 “members” about the good news. And ask for more money.
ENDA won’t be voted on in the House because it has NO chance in the US Senate. Jared Polis is fundraising with these comments. He is offering hope, where there isn’t any. There may be enough support in the House, but none in the US Senate.
Pelosi promised her Members that she wouldn’t bring ENDA up for a vote before the Mid-terms unless the Senate had the votes to pass it. There are only 51 supporters of ENDA in the US Senate. Because LGBT-issues are non-negotiable, that isn’t about to change. Despite the hundreds of millions spent by HRC to lobby Congress, they’ve never changed a single vote.
In order to pass ENDA we need to either change some Senators or change the minds of their constituents. We’re not doing wither on of those things.
Polis should know better.
@fredo777: “Glass half-filled?”
Politicians positions on LGBT-issues are based on their morality and the majority beliefs of their constituents. They don’t just magically change their minds. (In 40 years only one US Senator has ever changed his mind about LGBT issues – after he announced he was leaving office – Senator Chris Dodd).
Some of us have counted the votes. ENDA have NO chance in the US Senate. That’s why the House won’t waste their time or risk anything controversial before the Mid-terms.
It’s not about optimism, it’s about math. Math doesn’t lie.
@fredo777: PEOPLE can change their minds – not US Senators. Not unless their constituents change their minds. Our Senators consistently represent the majority of their constituents or they don’t get elected or re-elected.
For 58 years (so far) we have lobbied Senator Robert Byrd (WV-D) hoping he’d change his mind. He hasn’t and won’t – 1) He is a Baptist and 2) 70% of West Virginia’s residents are anti-gay.
It is folly to believe we can change votes in the congress – it just doesn’t happen for LGBT issues. That’s why HRC is such a waste of money.
@D’oh, The Magnificent: DADT is in line for attachment to the Defense Spending Bill, not ENDA. But, attaching to another Bill will need 60 votes and we only have 54 Votes for DADT and fewer for ENDA.
The US Senate is the problem. Victory Fund, HRC, NGLTF, Equality Giving and other LGBT groups are doing NOTHING to change US Senators. Some of HRC’s wasted $50 million a year could be out to better use.