WASHINGTON, April 12 (UPI) -- U.S. President Obama supports the Employment Non-Discrimination Act but has no plans to pre-empt Congress with an executive order, a spokesman said Thursday.
"The president is dedicated to securing equal rights for all LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) Americans," press secretary Jay Carney told reporters.
Obama "has long supported an inclusive employment non-discrimination act, which would prohibit employers across the country from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity," Carney said, likening his support for comprehensive non-discrimination legislation to the legislative repeal of the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy that barred gay personnel from acknowledging their sexual orientation to their peers.
"While it is not our usual practice to discuss executive orders that may or may not be under consideration, we do not expect that an EO on LGBT non-discrimination for federal contractors will be issued at this time. … The approach we're taking at this time is to try to build support for passage of this legislation, a comprehensive approach to legislate on the issue of non-discrimination," Carney said.
"We believe that this is the right approach to achieve success here in a broad and comprehensive legislative action. And at this time, we're not considering as a part of that an executive order. …
"What I do know for a fact is that this president is absolutely dedicated to securing equal rights for LGBT Americans."
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