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The Skanner Black History Month
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Jeremy Christian Guilty of Killing 2 Who Tried to Stop His Slurs on Max

Today jurors found Christian guilty of the May 26, 2017 stabbing deaths of Taliesin Namkai-Meche and Ricky Best

States Step Up Funding for Planned Parenthood Clinics

A spokesman for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon said the agency has been "working closely with state officials to create critical backstops and protect access to care for all Oregonians who need it, regardless of federal action on Title X"

Oregon Denies Permit for Pipeline Before Federal Decision

Oregon's Department of Land Conservation and Development says a proposed liquefied natural gas export terminal in Coos Bay would have significant adverse effects on the state's coastal scenic and aesthetic resources, endangered species and critical habitat

Rep. Blumenauer Joined by Sens. Markey, Sanders, and Warren to Introduce Bill to Hold Big Oil Companies Accountable

"Amidst the growing climate emergency, closing this loophole is a small step we must take to hold Big Oil accountable and to protect our communities," said Blumenauer. 

NEWS BRIEFS

African American Initiative Breast Cancer Survivor Celebration to be Held Saturday

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Dr. Karin Edwards Named New President of Clark College

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OneUnited Bank Launches New Limited-Edition Harriet Tubman Card

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Oregon House Votes to End Driver’s License Suspensions for Failure to Pay Fines

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Black History Month 2020: “African Americans and the Vote”

In our celebration of Black History Month 2020, the DPO Black Caucus looks forward to the screening of the award-winning documentary,...

Companies altered road test results given to Idaho agency

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Companies that are responsible for checking the quality of Idaho’s road materials have altered the results of their asphalt tests thousands of times, government documents show. Those changes may have allowed contractors that repair and build Idaho’s highway...

University lab cited for animal welfare violations in Oregon

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon Health & Science University laboratory was cited for violating animal welfare laws after five prairie voles died of thirst, federal inspectors said.The U.S. Department of Agriculture also cited the university after a person risked contaminating surgical...

OPINION

Black America is Facing a Housing Crisis

As the cost of housing soars the homeless population jumps 12 percent, the number of people renting grows and homeownership falls ...

Trump Expands Muslim Ban to Target Africans

Under the new ban on countries, four out of five people who will be excluded are Africans ...

Martin Luther King Day is an Opportunity for Service

Find out where you can volunteer and make a difference to the community ...

Looking to 2020 — Put Your Vote to WORK!

Ronald Reagan, who turned his back on organized labor and started America’s middle-class into a tailspin, has recently been voted by this administration’s NLRB into the Labor Hall of Fame ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Sanders wins Nevada caucuses, takes national Democratic lead

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Bernie Sanders scored a commanding victory in Nevada’s presidential caucuses, cementing his status as the Democrats' national front-runner but escalating tensions over whether he’s too liberal to defeat President Donald Trump. Joe Biden was a distant second,...

Moscow targets Chinese with raids amid virus fears

MOSCOW (AP) — Bus drivers in Moscow kept their WhatsApp group chat buzzing with questions this week about what to do if they spotted passengers who might be from China riding with them in the Russian capital.“Some Asian-looking (people) have just got on. Probably Chinese. Should I...

Lizzo, 'Just Mercy' win top honors at NAACP Image Awards

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — Lizzo was named entertainer of the year and “Just Mercy” won best motion picture, best actor and best supporting actor Saturday at the NAACP Image Awards, as the show that recognizes entertainers of color ladled honors on the film that was snubbed by...

ENTERTAINMENT

'West Side Story' opening draws protesters on Broadway

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Broadway's 'To Kill a Mockingbird' readies for Garden visit

NEW YORK (AP) — Actor Kyle Scatliffe has gone to Madison Square Garden plenty of times — for a Rangers game, a Muse concert and a WWE event. Next week, he's going back again, but this time he won't be in the seats.Scatliffe on Wednesday will be starring in the hit Broadway play...

OWN's 'Cherish the Day' is a rare celebration of black love

LOS ANGELES (AP) — To separate filmmaker and TV producer Ava DuVernay’s trenchant, history-driven projects, including “Selma” and “When They See Us,” from her new romantic drama series is to sell short the determined thoughtfulness that shapes all her...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Zamboni driver, 42, gets win as emergency goalie for 'Canes

TORONTO (AP) — David Ayres was sitting in the stands with his wife at Scotiabank Arena when Carolina...

Self-styled daredevil dies in crash after rocket launch

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2nd person in days killed by Mardi Gras float in New Orleans

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Germany's Hamburg city in elections marked by climate issues

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Pope cautions against 'unfair' Middle East peace plans

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German, Dutch carnival parades called off due to weather

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McMenamins
Leigh Ann Caldwell CNN

gay protest signsWASHINGTON (CNN) -- The U.S. Senate voted Monday to begin debate on an anti-discrimination bill to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees from workplace discrimination.

That means a Senate vote on the Employment Nondiscrimination Act, also known as ENDA, could occur this week. And supporters are confident they have the support of 60 Senators necessary to get it to a final vote.

But the bill's passage in the House is far less certain.

The measure would provide the same protections for LGBT workers as are already guaranteed on the basis of race, gender and religion. It would no longer be lawful for employers to discriminate based on a person's "actual or perceived" sexual orientation.

Proponents are championing the bill, pressuring opponents or those on the fence to come out in support.

President Barack Obama wrote a rare op-ed in the Huffington Post in which he called job-site LGBT discrimination "offensive" and "wrong."

"And it needs to stop, because in the United States of America, who you are and who you love should never be a fireable offense," the President wrote.

After the procedural vote Monday, the White House released a statement saying that Obama looks forward to the Senate's consideration of EDNA.

"He thanks the lawmakers from both sides of the aisle who have stood up for America's core values of fairness and equality," it read.

The newest member of the Senate, New Jersey Democrat Cory Booker, who was sworn in last week after a special election, has passionately defended ENDA on one of his oft-used methods of communication.

He said on Twitter he will support ENDA, "Absolutely, unequivocally, proudly with gusto & enthusiasm. I hope to make it my first 'co-sponsor.'"

Wisconsin Democrat Tammy Baldwin, the country's first openly gay U.S. senator, similarly spoke in support of the legislation.

"It's about freedom, the freedom to realize our founding belief that all Americans are created equal under the law. It's about fairness, about whether lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans deserve to be treated just like their family members, their friends, their neighbors and fellow workers," she said Monday before the vote.

"It's about opportunity, about whether every American gets to dream the same dreams, chase the same ambitions and have the same shot at success," Baldwin said.

Republican support

The measure is coming up for a vote because of a recent wave of momentum in support of it. The bill gained the support of all 53 Democrats and both independents who normally caucus with them, and two Republican co-sponsors: Sens. Mark Kirk of Illinois and Susan Collins of Maine.

Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nevada, announced his support Monday morning. His decision leads supporters within the Senate to believe that they have the votes to pass the bill. Two other Republicans, Orrin Hatch of Utah and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, voted for the measure at the committee level, but neither has indicated a position for the full Senate vote.

In his op-ed, the President put pressure on not only the Senate but the House of Representatives as well, where a vote is much more uncertain.

Collins said Monday that she hopes to get enough votes to spur the House to act.

"I think that it was Republican votes that made the difference tonight. And that that is a strong signal," the senator said.

"I also think that attitudes are changing very rapidly on gay rights issues, and we're seeing every passing day more and more people have embraced equality," she said.

Republican opposition

"If more members of Congress step up, we can put an end to this form of discrimination once and for all," Obama wrote.

The Republican-led House might be a major obstacle to ENDA's success; House Speaker John Boehner has already announced his opposition.

"The speaker believes this legislation will increase frivolous litigation and cost American jobs, especially small-business jobs," spokesman Michael Steel said.

And Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Virginia, the second ranking House Republican, refused to commit to bringing up the legislation. He said that he and fellow Republican leaders "will review it" if the Senate passes it.

House Democratic Leader, Nancy Pelosi, said the measure would still pass the House despite Boehner's opposition because most Democrats would support it.

"All we need is maybe 20 Republicans and we can pass the bill," she said on MSNBC Sunday.

Chad Griffin, president of the LGBT activist group Human Rights Campaign, had harsh words for Boehner.

"The speaker, of all people, should certainly know what it's like to go to work every day afraid of being fired. Instead of letting the far right trample him again, it's time for Speaker Boehner to stand with the majority of everyday Republican voters and support ENDA," Griffin said.

The conservative political organization Heritage Action put out a notice to all Republican lawmakers recommending a no vote. Its scorecards are threatening assessments of lawmakers who fear a primary challenger or are in need of the outside group's influx of campaign cash.

Heritage Action says the bill "raises serious religious liberty concerns" and would "potentially discourage job creation."

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins also slammed ENDA.

"Can you imagine walking into your child's classroom and meeting a teacher dressed in drag? Neither can most Americans. But unfortunately, that's just one of the many consequences of adopting a law as dangerous as this one," he wrote in a blog post Friday.

"Preschools, day care centers, summer camps, religious chains like Hobby Lobby or Chick-fil-A -- they'll all be subject to the law, regardless of their personal beliefs and workplace standards," Perkins said.

An exemption for religious organizations is included in the bill, but some want the religious protection extended to secular businesses, which ENDA proponents say would gut the entire bill. Employers with fewer than 15 employees would also be exempted from the law.

Heads of major businesses have come out in support of the law, including Tim Cook, Apple's CEO, who wrote an op-ed Monday in the Wall Street Journal.

"So long as the law remains silent on the workplace rights of gay and lesbian Americans, we as a nation are effectively consenting to discrimination against them," he wrote. "We urge senators to support the Employment Nondiscrimination Act, and we challenge the House of Representatives to bring it to the floor for a vote."

Twenty-one states currently have laws on the books protecting lesbian and gay workers from discrimination and 17 states protect transgender workers, according to the Human Rights Campaign. The federal statute would create protections in all states and the District of Columbia.

CNN's Lisa Desjardins, Ted Barrett and Deirdre Walsh and Dan Merica contributed to this report

™ & © 2013 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

 

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