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Republican Senator Dean Heller Becomes Critical 60th Vote For LGBT Job Protections

By Zack Ford  

"Republican Senator Dean Heller Becomes Critical 60th Vote For LGBT Job Protections"

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Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV)

Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV)

Republican Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) just announced his support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), making him the critical 60th vote needed to bring the bill to the Senate floor:

HELLER: After listening to Nevadans’ concerns about this issue from a variety of viewpoints and after numerous conversations with my colleagues, I feel that supporting this legislation is the right thing to do. Under the leadership of this Governor, as well as the legislature over the past several years Nevada has established a solid foundation of anti-discrimination laws. This legislation raises the federal standards to match what we have come to expect in Nevada, which is that discrimination must not be tolerated under any circumstance.

Indeed, Nevada added gender identity protections to its laws just two years ago, and they were signed into effect by Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval.

Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has scheduled the cloture vote for sometime Monday afternoon or evening. This will be the first time in ENDA’s 20-year history that it will pass on the Senate floor.

Update

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has reiterated his opposition to ENDA, quashing hopes that ENDA might prevail in the House after passing the Senate. Boehner claimed that the legislation would “increase frivolous litigation and cost American jobs,” although a review by the Government Accountability Office found that there were relatively few lawsuits filed in the various states that already have LGBT employment protections.

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