House Cuts Transgender People from Hate Crimes Bill

I found this on common dreams…

Published on Friday, September 28, 2007 by the San Francisco Chronicle
House Cuts Transgender People from Hate Crimes Bill
by Carolyn Lochhead
Washington – Even as the Senate passed a hate crimes bill sought for a decade by gays and lesbians, House Democratic leaders decided Thursday to strip transgender people from another long-languishing civil rights bill, generating dismay in the gay community and furious but fruitless lobbying for more time.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco and Reps. George Miller, D-Martinez, Barney Frank, D-Mass., and Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., believe they lack the votes in the Democrat-controlled House to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act if it includes gender identity along with sexual orientation as a prohibited ground for firing an employee.

Frank and Baldwin are the only openly gay members of Congress.

“People now accept the fact that we just don’t have the votes for the transgender,” Frank said.

Nervous Democrats had been hearing about Republican amendments to the employment bill, Frank said, “that would talk about schoolteachers, and what happens when the kid comes back from summer vacation and teachers change gender. We just lost enough Democrats and we couldn’t be sure of the Republicans.”

The move put a damper Thursday on what Democrats otherwise were hailing as a landmark day for gay rights.

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