Building off momentum from major decisions at the Supreme Court in favor of marriage equality, a Senate committee is set to hold a vote July 10 on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, the Washington Blade has learned.
The Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee has scheduled the markup for the LGBT job anti-bias legislation two weeks to the day that the Supreme Court ruled against the Defense of Marriage Act and California’s Proposition 8.
Scheduling the vote is first step for Senate HELP Committee Chair Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) in fulfilling the promise he announced this year to move ENDA out of the committee this year.
All 12 Senate Democrats on the panel are co-sponsors of the legislation — in addition to Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) — so ENDA should have no trouble obtaining approval from the committee.
One question is the way Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaksa), a HELP committee member, will vote on the legislation. A week before the Supreme Court decision, she became the third sitting U.S. Republican senator to come out in support of marriage equality. She also voted in favor of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal and hate crimes protection legislation.