Now that the clock is ticking on his administration, President Obama is getting around to taking care of a bunch of things that didn’t take priority earlier. The latest: an executive order protecting transgender federal employees.
Obama hasn’t actually signed the order yet, but he promised at a White House event that he will. Paired with an executive order banning federal contractors from discriminating against their workers on the basis of sexual orientation, the second executive order sends a clear signal to the market about what should be standard protections.
“The majority of Fortune 500 companies already have nondiscrimination policies to protect their employees because it’s the right thing to do and because many say it helps to retain and attract the best talent,” Obama said. “And I agree. So if Congress won’t act, I will.”
Of course, Obama could have acted sooner, but he has been pinning his hopes on the moribund legislative body known as the House of Representatives. Of course, the chances of any type of employment protections coming out of the Republican-controlled house are roughly on par with Antonin Scalia serving as Grand Marshall of the San Francisco Pride Parade.
So now we have promises for two executive orders from Obama. Would someone please send him a pen so he will just sign them?