By SAM HANANEL, Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) — A Senate panel has approved a bill that would ban job discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
The measure won support from all the Democrats and three Republicans on the 22-member committee, signaling it has a strong chance of passage in the full Senate.
The vote is the latest victory for gay rights advocates and another signal of rapidly changing attitudes in Congress. It comes after the Supreme Court ruled earlier this month that same-sex spouses are entitled to the same federal benefits as other married couples in states where gay marriage is legal.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has said he expects the full Senate to take up the measure later this year. It is not clear whether GOP leaders in the House will consider the bill.
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