On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed the Equality Act for the second time in two years. The first time around the bill was unable to get through the Republican-controlled Senate. This time, however, there is hope that things might break through, as the vote passed in the House, 224 votes for, and 206 votes against. Debate within the House got emotional and personal at times, as congress members cited circumstances and events from their own lives as reasons to vote for or against the bill.
The Equality Act was a top agenda item for President Joe Biden as it would prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ+ Americans. Specifically, the act would extend Civil Right Act protections to LGBTQ citizens in an effort to stop discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation.
Now that the bill has reached the Senate, the Equality Act will need the support of 60 or more senators in order to be ratified by Biden’s signature. That means that Act will require the vote of at least 10 Republicans, assuming that all Democrats in the Senate vote for the bill.