All Rights reserved
A trade deal between Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. includes a provision -- pushed by Canada -- that ensures LGBTQ workers affected by the pact are not subjected to discrimination. What should have been a non-controversial addition to the agreement is now threatening to derail the whole plan, reports Politico, with conservative GOP lawmakers threatening to pull support if the pro-LGBTQ language is not removed.
In a letter signed by 40 Republicans, including notorious homophobes like Steve King and Louie Gohmert, House members urged Donald Trump to rescind the protections.
"A trade agreement is no place for the adoption of social policy," the letter, sent Friday, stated.
To justify their position, the lawmakers reminded Trump that there is no federal law banning employment discrimination against LGBTQ people and pointed out that his administration has worked to reverse Obama-era guidelines and policies that attempted to tackle such bias.
"It is especially inappropriate and insulting to our sovereignty to needlessly submit to social policies which the United States Congress has so far explicitly refused to accept," reads the letter. "One wonders at the contradictory policy coming through (the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative) when other Departments within your Administration are working to come into alignment on (sexual orientation and gender identity) policy."
The letter is referring to the Education and Justice departments repeated attacks on LGBTQ people, and its insistence that current U.S. law does not protect them from discrimination at work or school.
Colorado congressman Doug Lamborn told Politico that the protections could kill the entire agreement, which is supposed to be a feather in Trump's cap.
It's possible that the language could be tweaked, or completely excised, before the planned signing on November 30.