Harry Reid urges Republicans to "capitulate" on ENDA

"The Republican Party is staggering right now ... They have offended everybody"

By Elias Isquith

Published November 6, 2013 7:50PM (EST)

According to the Huffington Post, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has some advice for Republicans (not that they asked): give up — and soon.

Speaking on the House's likely opposition to holding a vote on the Employee Non-Discrimination Act, Reid said, "I think the House is going to have to capitulate, if they have any hope of having a president that can be a viable candidate or they think they can elect some Republicans and they want to hang onto the House." ENDA is currently supported by a vast majority of Americans.

Reid also weighed in on how the Republican rebranding effort was going. In his estimation, not particularly well. "They're wrong on policy and tone," Reid said. "So they don't follow their own very expensive report that they had prepared."

"The Republican Party is staggering right now ... They have offended everybody," Reid continued. "Over the years, what they've done to African-Americans is really hard to comprehend. Now the new people they're beating up on are Hispanics. Women. They went after the poor with cutting food stamps by $40 billion. Lesbians, gays and the other people we've included in [ENDA] -- they have whacked on them for a long, long time."

More from the Huffington Post:

On Monday evening, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act was about to clear a key hurdle in the Senate. But first, Republicans who opposed the bill were given a chance to voice their criticism on the Senate floor. After all, there had already been speeches from senators who backed the legislation.

But then something surprising happened. When Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), who was presiding over the Senate, asked, "Who yields time in opposition?" no one spoke up. Not a single senator took to the floor to give a speech explaining why he or she opposes barring workplace discrimination against LGBT individuals.

In an interview with a small group of reporters on Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said he found it amazing that not even Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who railed against Obamacare for more than 21 hours in September, took the opportunity to get up and speak.

"You know, that was funny," said Reid. "[Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.)] pointed to [Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.)], and Rubio pointed to Cruz, because we were told that it was Cruz who was going to give the speech. I find it terribly interesting that he was unwilling to stand and say anything, because we found him willing to talk about anything. But he wasn't willing to do that."

Elias Isquith

Elias Isquith is a former Salon staff writer.

MORE FROM Elias IsquithFOLLOW eliasisquithLIKE Elias Isquith

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Employee Non-discrimination Act Enda Harry Reid Lgbtq Lgbtq Rights The Huffington Post