Gay rights bill clears first hurdle in Senate

Gay rights bill clears first hurdle in Senate

UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 4: Capitol workers, on either side of the Richard B. Russell Memorial Statue, paint the arches around the interior of the Russell Rotunda on Monday, Nov. 4, 2013. The Architect of the Capitol recently finished installing a new automatic fire sprinkler system in the Russell Senate Office Building, adjacent to the Kennedy Caucus Room and the Russell Rotunda. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

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by Associated Press

khou.com

Posted on November 4, 2013 at 7:29 PM

WASHINGTON -- A major gay rights bill has cleared its first hurdle in the Senate.

On a vote of 61-30, the Senate voted to move ahead on the legislation that would prohibit workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

The bipartisan vote increases the chances that the Senate will pass the bill by week's end, but its prospects in the Republican-led House are dimmer.

Speaker John Boehner remains opposed to the bill, arguing that it will lead to frivolous lawsuits and undercut job creation.

A vote would come 17 years after the Senate rejected a similar discrimination measure by one vote.

The Obama administration has said passage of the bill is long overdue.

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