H2 Note: If you believe that the Republicans in control of the GOP are NOT PRO-ABORITON and PRO-GAY MAIRRAGE, then I've got an election to sell you this November. Just like they blow smoke up our asses on how they are going to secure the border and stop the illegal alien invasion from Mexico, they are NO DIFFERENT a brood of lying bastards than the Democrats are.


March 13, 2014
Susan Davis,

Fellow billionaire and GOP donor Seth Klarman also donated $375,000 to the campaign spearheaded by the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay rights lobby. HRC is putting up an additional $1.3 million in the effort to get 218 House lawmakers — a majority of the chamber — on record in support of ENDA
GOP donors join push for gay rights bill

WASHINGTON — A deep-pocketed group of Republican donors and former GOP lawmakers is joining a gay rights coalition to push the U.S. House to vote on a bill banning workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

"America is a place where the freedom to be who you are shouldn't be a barrier to your ability to get a job and provide for your family," said Paul Singer, a billionaire hedge fund founder and big Republican donor. Singer is putting $375,000 toward the push for passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. "In the workplace, employees should be judged on their merit and hard work and not on aspects that are irrelevant to their performance."

Fellow billionaire and GOP donor Seth Klarman also donated $375,000 to the campaign spearheaded by the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay rights lobby. HRC is putting up an additional $1.3 million in the effort to get 218 House lawmakers — a majority of the chamber — on record in support of ENDA.

Already 199 House lawmakers are ENDA co-sponsors, all but six of them Democrats. The campaign will target 48 House Republicans who the coalition believes are most likely to support the bill either because they hail from more moderate or suburban districts or have more moderate voting records.

The campaign, working under an 11-member umbrella group called Americans for Workplace Opportunity, will dispatch two local organizers per congressional district to build on-the-ground support through district meetings, town halls and local editorials, among other efforts.

If the group can get 218 lawmakers on public record in support of the legislation, they say House GOP leaders, including Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, may have to rethink their decision not to vote this year.

Boehner opposes ENDA because he says it could spark frivolous lawsuits and hamper businesses. He has said repeatedly that the House will not take up the bill that the Senate approved in November.

"Leadership needs to hear from America. They need to hear from their own members, and they need to hear from the constituencies that support it," said former representative Deborah Pryce, R-Ohio, who is one of the former GOP lawmakers supporting the bill. Other former lawmakers joining the effort are former representative Tom Reynolds, R-N.Y., and former senator Norm Coleman, R-Minn. They cite the bill's support within the business community as a particularly potent appeal to GOP lawmakers.

"Business is way ahead of government on this and we need to catch up," Pryce said. The vast majority of Fortune 500 companies, 91%, already operate with non-discrimination policies that include sexual orientation and 61% include policies on gender identity, according to HRC. "I think it can be a good Republican issue. We just have to help (lawmakers) increase their comfort level with it and there's plenty of time to do that, slowly, methodically, district by district," Pryce said.

General Mills is part of a group of major employers who support ENDA. "If employees cannot bring their full selves to work, and if employees live in fear of being treated differently simply based on who they are, it comes at a cost to the company," said Ken Charles, the vice president of global Inclusion and staffing.

Twenty one states already have laws barring employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, and 17 of those include gender identity.

The effort is notable for its tone and is unlike the negative public pressure campaigns often used to pressure lawmakers. Jeff Cook-McCormac of the American Unity Fund, a coalition group that lobbies Republicans on gay rights issues, said how advocates talk about ENDA is critically important to building congressional support.

"In order to do that in a convincing and effective way, we have to be really thoughtful and respectful about where people are coming from," he said, "The reason why the clock is speeding up so quickly on these issues is, in our opinion, because we're pursuing these objectives in an authentically bipartisan way."

ENDA passed the Senate 64-32 last November with the assist of 10 Republicans. The legislation has been introduced in nearly every Congress for the past two decades. Supporters say rapidly changing public opinion on gay rights issues and the recent veto by Gov. Jan Brewer, R-Ariz., of legislation that would have allowed businesses to deny services to gay customers are fueling renewed interest in enacting a federal law. Current federal law already bans employer discrimination based on race, color, sex, nationality, religion, age and disability.

The Senate-passed bill exempts religious organizations and the U.S. military, and only applies to employers with more than 15 people.

A Pew Research Center poll released Monday underscored the rapidly changing views among younger Republicans on gay rights issues. More than six in 10, 61%, of Republicans age 30 or younger support same-sex marriage while 35% oppose it. "On this issue, young Republicans' views are more in line with Democrats," the survey reported.