Senate lawmakers on Thursday passed a bill banning workplace discrimination against LGBT individuals in a historic, albeit nominal, victory four decades in the making.
The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) passed its final vote in the full Senate 64-32, just three days after its first since 1996, when a similar measure failed but just one vote. The full Senate would not vote again on a workplace protection bill for gays and lesbians until this past Monday, when lawmakers voted to begin debate. It was 1974 when Congress first saw a bill of this kind.
Signs of the measure becoming law were stunted earlier in the week, however, when Speaker John Boehner voiced his opposition on the grounds that it would cost small business and create “frivolous litigation.”
Ten Republicans voted for its passage, including John McCain, Jeff Flake and Rob Portman (who famously flipped positions on same-sex marriage after his son came out of the closet).
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