Friday, September 28, 2007

GUTLESS: Nancy Pelosi, George Miller, Barney Frank, & Tammy Baldwin

House cuts transgender people from hate crimes bill

Even as the Senate passed a hate crimes bill sought for a decade by gays and lesbians, House Democratic leaders decided Thursday to strip transgender people from another long-languishing civil rights bill, generating dismay in the gay community and furious but fruitless lobbying for more time.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco and Reps. George Miller, D-Martinez, Barney Frank, D-Mass., and Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., believe they lack the votes in the Democrat-controlled House to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act if it includes gender identity along with sexual orientation as a prohibited ground for firing an employee.

Oddly enough, the hate crimes bill that passed the Senate Thursday includes transgender people and won 60-39, the supermajority necessary to beat a Republican filibuster. All 49 Senate Democrats voted for it, along with two independents and nine Republicans.

Read the whole story here.

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