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Jonathan Lewis Funds New Effort Targeting Obama To Sign Gay Protections Order
By Carlos Santoscoy
Published: April 14, 2012
Jonathan Lewis, son of former Progressive Insurance CEO Peter Lewis,
is funding a new campaign targeting President Barack Obama to sign an
executive order protecting LGBT workers.
Senior Obama administration officials on Wednesday said the order
which would ban federal contractors from employment discrimination
based on sexual orientation and gender identity was not forthcoming.
The order had reportedly already been approved by the Departments of
Labor and Justice.
Lewis, who is openly gay, told The Washington Post
that he would spend $100,000 to fund a We Can't Wait campaign.
“This isn't a broken promise President Obama can blame on Congress,”
Lewis said. “He has not been able to provide a single valid reason for
why he is now refusing to sign the executive order protecting LGBT
workers. It has become increasingly clear that this decision is based
on cowardice rather than principled leadership.”
White House spokesperson Jay Carney insisted on Thursday the the
president does support such protections but would prefer to see
Congress approve the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)
sponsored by Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank and Oregon Senator Jeff
“The president is committed to securing equal rights for LGBT
Americans, and that is why he has long supported ENDA,” Carney said.
“The approach we're taking at this time is try to build support for
passage of this legislation, a comprehensive approach, to legislate on
the issue of non-discrimination.”
ENDA, however, has little chance of passage in the Republican-controlled House.
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