Congress moved closer this week to outlawing workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The Senate voted 61-30 to begin debate on a bill that would extend federal non-discrimination law to gay, lesbian, and bisexual people.

From The New York Times:

Federal law already protects people from discrimination at work because of race, religion and a number of other factors. But it remains legal in most states to fire or refuse to hire people because they are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. Just 21 states and the District of Columbia offer such protections.

THELAW.TV polled 500 Internet users to find out whether they think federal law should protect gays, lesbians, and bisexuals from workplace discrimination. Barely a majority of those polled said, yes, federal law should protect gays from discrimination in the workplace.

Here are the results of THELAW.TV’s poll:

52% of Americans say, yes, federal law should protect gays from discrimination in the workplace

48% of Americans say, no, federal law should not protect gays from discrimination in the workplace

Here are some comments from the poll respondents:

  • “Anyone discriminated against should be protected in the workplace.”
  • “If there is going to be a law, it should be for everyone.”
  • “I don’t think it would really do much. Pot is illegal, yet there’s still people that do it.”
  • “Yes. Although workplaces can certainly make a rule that says sexual orientation isn’t appropriate to discuss at work.”
  • “Yes. Federal law should protect all people from discriminations. Protection is the governments one most important job.”
  • “Absolutely. When will people realize that people are people before they are determined by their sexual orientation.”

Seven Republicans crossed party lines to approve beginning debate on the Senate bill.

What do you think? Tell us in the comment section below.

THELAW.TV’s survey was conducted on Thumb using a demographically balanced internet-based survey of 500 American adults and has a margin of error of plus-or-minus 4.9 percent.