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Democrats’ “Equality Act” Passes US House, Meant To Protect LGBTQ From Discrimination

May 17, 2019

A bill intended to further protect LGBQT people from discrimination passed the US House of Representatives today. The bill received total support from Democrats and minimal support from Republicans (8 in all), passing 236-173.

Known as the “Equality Act,” the bill is meant to protect “people by prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. The protections would extend to employment, housing, loan applications, education, public accommodations and other areas,” Fox News reports.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who believes the bill will bring the US “closer to equal liberty and justice for all,” said that LGBTQ rights  need to be protected in “every place.”

Sexual orientation and gender identity “deserve full civil rights protections – in the workplace and in every place, education, housing, credit, jury service, public accommodations,” Pelosi said according to Fox News.

Fox News reports that in the unlikely event the Republican-controlled Senate also passed the bill, President Donald Trump has said he would veto it.

According to the report, one opponent of the proposed legislation, Rep. Vicky Hartzler, R-Mo, called the legislation “grossly misnamed” and said it is “anything but equalizing,” while Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., called it “horrifying.”

Hartzler said that the bill ‘”hijacks” the 1964 Civil Rights Act to create “a brave new world of `discrimination’ based on undefined terms of sexual orientation and gender identity,” Hartzler said. The legislation threatens women’s sports, shelters and schools, and could silence female athletes, domestic abuse survivors and other women.”

Hice, Fox News reports, said the bill would “cause Catholic schools to lose federal grants for school lunches or require faith-based adoption agencies to place children with same-sex couples.”

The bill’s chief sponsor, Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., said the Equality Act “affirms fairness and equality as core American values ‘and ensures members of the LGBTQ community can live their lives free from the fear of legal discrimination of any kind,'” Fox News reports.

Fox News also reports that an unidentified Trump Administration official said the White House “opposes discrimination of any kind and supports the equal treatment of all. However, this bill in its current form is filled with poison pills that threaten to undermine parental and conscience rights.”

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