Now that health care reform has been passed ...
"There are" enough votes in the House to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell", Rep. Tammy Baldwin tells the San Diego Gay & Lesbian News.
" 'As someone who has actually counted the votes, I believe that there are,' Baldwin said. 'That’s one of the things the LGBT Equality Caucus does is to [focus] attention to making sure we can tell [House] leadership, with accuracy, what the vote would be if they bring the measures up to the floor.' Baldwin and Rep. Barney Frank established the LGBT Equality Caucus in June 2008. It now includes nearly 90 members of Congress. President Barack Obama has recently met with both the Congressional Black and Congressional Hispanic caucuses, but not yet with the LGBT one. Baldwin says this is because 'we haven’t put a spotlight on it of late.' She said the group 'probably' would press for a meeting with the president in the future. Pressure has grown dramatically in recent days for a spotlight on LGBT-related issues in Congress."
Last Thursday, Lt. Dan Choi, Capt. Jim Pietrangelo and activist Robin McGehee were arrested during civil disobedience demonstrations to pressure the White House and Congress to act on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell". That same day, activists were arrested in sit-ins in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's San Francisco and Capitol Hill offices to pressure the Speaker to move ENDA to the floor for a vote.
There's also this in DC Agenda's report on last week's civil disobedience demonstrations. The newspaper interviewed the chairman of the House Committee on Education and Labor (HELP) where ENDA has been stalled since September. "Moments after the arrested protesters were taken away, Rep. George Miller (D-CA) was seen walking along a nearby street. He chairs the House Education & Labor Committee, which is handling ENDA. Asked by DC Agenda when ENDA would advance to a markup, Miller replied, 'Right after health care.'"