Republicans will reintroduce anti-LGBT bills when Trump is President
Republicans are planning to revive their anti-LGBT legislation in Congress when Donald Trump is President.
The Republican-backed First Amendment Defence Act permit forms of anti-LGBT discrimination on the grounds of religion. The law has been stalled in Congress until now due to an expected veto from President Obama – however, President-elect Trump recently pledged to sign it into law.
In a speech to Catholic interest groups, Mr Trump confirmed he would not veto the law, which bans the government from taking any “action against a person on the basis that such person believes or acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognised as the union of one man and one woman”.
The broadly-written law would part-legalise religious discrimination against LGBT people in all sectors, from employment to retail to healthcare, banning any intervention or legal recourse.
A spokesperson for the bill’s sponsor, Republican Senator Mike Lee, confirmed plans to reintroduce it in the new session, in a bid to rush it through under the Trump Presidency.
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Lee’s officials told Buzzfeed: “Hopefully November’s results will give us the momentum we need to get this done next year.
“We do plan to reintroduce FADA next Congress and we welcome Trump’s positive words about the bill.”
Extreme anti-LGBT Senator Ted Cruz was positively gleeful about the chance of the bill passing, despite his personality clashes with Trump during the Presidential election.
He told the website: “The prospects for protecting religious freedom are brighter now than they have been in a long time.
“We are having ongoing conversations with our colleagues both in Congress and leaders in the new administration about a multitude of ways we can honour the commitment made to the voters in this last election.
“Any effort to protect religious liberty has brighter prospects with a new Congress and new administration.”
The GOP holds a majority in both the House and the Senate.
Any attempt by Trump to block the law is highly unlikely, given his direct pledge to sign it. His cabinet also includes a number of the bill’s sponsors, while his VP Mike Pence is also a strong supporter of similar legislation.