While federal law prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, race and national origin, it doesn't stop employers from firing or refusing to hire workers because they are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. Today, all Senate Democratic and 10 Republicans voted to change that by passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Wisconsin's' Tammy Baldwin is the first openly gay U-S Senator.
"For folks like myself in the LGBT community, the opportunity to be judged in the workplace by your skills and qualifications, your loyalty, your work ethic is an important pronouncement for this nation," Sen. Baldwin said.
In the more conservative House, Speaker John Boehner says he will even not be bringing the measure up for a floor vote.
2013 is becoming a year of major victories for gay rights.
The Supreme Court in June affirmed gay marriage and granted federal benefits to legally married same-sex couples and Illinois is on the verge of becoming the 15th state to legalize gay marriage.