By Sunnivie Brydum
Originally published on Advocate.com October 31 2013 7:08 PM ET
With a low-key procedural move, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ended a week of speculation about when the U.S. Senate will vote on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.
The Senate will make a cloture vote on ENDA, which would ban employment discrimination nationwide on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation, on Monday, reports the Washington Blade.
Reid filed for cloture on the legislation Thursday evening, a procedural move that requires 60 votes and essentially overcomes any effort at a filibuster. Once the cloture vote is taken — and if it achieves the 60-vote threshold — the chamber will debate the bill, then eventually make a final vote on it.
BuzzFeed's Chris Geidner notes that 59 Senators have already committed to supporting the bill, including all 55 Senate Democrats, and four Republicans. If the Senate votes on the bill next week, it will be the first time since 1996 that the chamber has given the long-languishing legislation an up-or-down vote. It would also be the first time Congress has ever voted on the antidiscrimination bill with stated protections for transgender Americans.
A spokesman for Nevada Democrat Reid anticipated that the Senate could make the final vote on the bill by Wednesday, following the cloture vote that is expected Monday.