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House Republicans Torpedo Spending Bill That Protected LGBT Workers

House of Representatives

While the anti-discrimination amendment passed with a bipartisan majority, the full bill failed to get the votes.

An internal struggle among House Republicans over LGBT rights has once again halted procedural funding legislation.

The energy and water appropriations bill, HR 5505, died Thursday after being voted down 112-305.

Rep. Sean Maloney received bipartisan support earlier in the week--from 43 House Republicans--for an amendment that protected LGBT employees from discrimination in federal contracts.

After his amendment passed, however, Republican Rep. Robert Pittenger introduced an amendment protecting funds awarded specifically to North Carolina, in support of the state's recent anti-transgender legislation.

"This is why this amendment is necessary--to protect North Carolinians from President Obama's executive overreach and maintain our constitutional system," Pittenger said.

The Department of Justice is suing the state for federal civil rights violations over the "bathroom law" HB2 and has threatened the loss of federal money to the state.

Stuck with an amendment trying to protect North Carolina's HB2, Democrats voted against the final bill in force, while Republicans split nearly in half across yeas and nays.

The confusion deepens when considering that of the 43 Republicans who voted in favor of Maloney's anti-discrimination amendment, only two voted no on the final bill with the HB2 amendment.

"It's time to end the games and level with America--you either think it's OK to discriminate against LGBT people or you don't," Maloney said in a statement.

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