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  • « Who among us is the neediest? | Main | The debate before the debate »

    November 07, 2007

    Give 'em hell, Barney!

    Posted by: Chris

    Barney_frank_enda_floor(UPDATE: Yeah so I changed the headline for the post; the first one was too cheesy.  Also, I've posted Barney's emotional floor speech.  Give it a quick listen.  The best part comes in the last three minutes.)

    Throughout the House debate this afternoon on ENDA, Congressman Barney Frank has been an absolute lion, calling out Republican opponents of the measure for nit-picking at the margins when their true objection is to the protection of gays from discrimination itself. Then, when Rep. Randy Forbes of Virginia tried to send the measure back to committee, ostensibly to ensure that it does not impact federal marriage laws, Barney had had enough.

    In an impassioned and emotional speech, Barney talked about his own felt obligation to adopt ENDA to protect gays in 30 states who can be fired from their jobs based on nothing but their sexual orientation. He dismissed any suggestion that such a measure could have any impact on marriage laws, and pointed out the House had already adopted a friendly amendment that clarified ENDA would have no impact on the Defense of Marriage Act, signed by President Clinton in 1996, that prohibits federal recognition of state-issued marriage licenses to gay couples.

    The end result was the defeat of the Republican amendment, 222-198. I am also thrilled to say ENDA itself was passed by the House by an impressive margin of 235-184.  Thirty-five Republicans joined 200 Democrats in passing the historic measure, which was first introduced more than 30 years ago.

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi took the podium and with a giant smile announced the result.

    Pelosienda

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    Comments

    1. Geena the Transgirl on Nov 7, 2007 6:31:07 PM:

      Barney was great. I'm glad 35 Republicans voted for it. That is real progress. Can we now move on to 2008?

    1. Jim-n-Alpharetta on Nov 7, 2007 7:02:57 PM:

      Agreed Geena, and also a big thanks to Chris Crain and Andrew Sullivan for adding some sanity to this debate. ENDA probably won't pass the Senate and surely won't get Bush's sorry signature.

      Can we please move on to 2008?

      When we finally get rid of the remnants of the neo-con Christianists and their agenda, then we'll finally get ENDA as well as other important GLBT issues resolved.

    1. Andoni on Nov 7, 2007 9:33:40 PM:

      As I said yesterday, Barney Frank is the real hero here, not HRC, not the United ENDA 300.

      If we had left this entirely in the hands of our national leaders, there would have been no bill.

      Thank you Barney, from the bottom of my heart.

    1. Kevin on Nov 8, 2007 6:34:50 AM:

      One of those moments where all of us should remember what this is really about. This was Barney's moment, well-deserved, and the passage was more Barney's accomplishment, in the end, than anyone else's. Hats off to him.

    1. Tim C on Nov 8, 2007 1:04:42 PM:

      Now, if the Senate will just have the balls to consider it...

      I'm writing to both my senators to encourage them to agitate that the Senate act on the bill. This is what it will take, individual action, as we now know we cannot rely on gay advocacy groups.

    1. Bloggernista on Nov 8, 2007 2:28:53 PM:

      Barney was on fire here. He deserves a great amount of credit for getting ENDA through the House.

      I still find it more than a little ironic that we now have more LGBT groups on record as opposing the first non-discrimination bill that sexual orientation to ever pass the House. Amazing.

    1. Andoni on Nov 8, 2007 4:20:34 PM:

      Yes, let's get those 300+ LGBT groups together again. Maybe with a little bit of luck we can get them to oppose DADT, DOMA and UAFA and get those passed too. :) :)

    1. jimbo on Nov 8, 2007 4:36:33 PM:

      Yaaay. I wanted the trans-inclusion, but this is still good news.

      I hate to sound like a Negative Nancy (no offense to Mrs. Pelosi) but this still has to somehow get past the Senate and then past a likely Presidential veto, right? Those don't sound like good odds to me, with or without trans-inclusion, so why are we getting so worked up?

      I guess I need a Howie Long game-day analysis on the progress of the bill and the factors what affect the likelihood of the bill passing at the next couple of stages.

      Political geeks please explain.

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