WASHINGTON, D.C. — A Republican congresswoman from North Carolina was among several who voted against a last-minute effort on Wednesday to push federal LGBT employment protections through Congress.
Rep. Virginia Foxx, a Republican who represents northwest North Carolina, joined six other Republicans in the House Rules Committee in voting against an amendment offered by Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) and openly gay Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.). The amendment would have essentially added the long-languishing Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) to the fiscal year 2015 defense authorization bill.
Hastings joined three other Democrats in voting for the amendment; Polis was absent during the vote, as was Republican ENDA co-sponsor Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), one of only eight House Republicans to sign on in support of the legislation.
The Washington Blade‘s Chris Johnson has characterized the amendment attempt as a “a last-ditch effort … before Congress adjourns this year.” When legislators come back in January, both the House and Senate will be controlled by Republicans.
In late 2013, the Democratic-controlled Senate passed a version of ENDA by a 64-32 vote. The House hasn’t brought it up.
A version of ENDA has been introduced in nearly every session of Congress for the past two decades.