Rep. Gohmert Ridicules Effort To Protect The Unemployed From Hiring Discrimination

September 14, 2011 9:51 am ET

From the September 13, 2011, session of the U.S. House of Representatives:

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REP. LOUIE GOHMERT: I understand that lawsuit filing is down significantly around the country. Our Constitution tells you, and we know in our hearts, that it's wrong to discriminate against people based on race, creed, color, national origin, gender, those things make sense. We shouldn't discriminate. And those are protected classes. We've also added no matter what your sexual preference, your sexual orientation, no matter what you're oriented toward sexually, because the Democratic majority would not allow us to define sexual orientation to exclude illegal activity, we know sexual orientation is a protected class now.

We're adding in this bill a new protected class called "Unemployed." Title, on page 129: Prohibition Of Discrimination In Employment On The Basis Of An Individual's Status As Unemployed. And it says right here in the findings that "we find that denial of employment opportunities to individuals because of their status as unemployed is discriminatory and burdens commerce," so, it goes on and explains this in the preceding pages. So the good news is, if you're unemployed and you go to apply for a job and you're not hired for that job, see a lawyer. You may be able to file a claim because you got discriminated against because you were unemployed. Now, some would point out legitimately that will discourage people from doing interviews of people unemployed, because if they do, they've got a claim, or may have a claim to make against the employer for discrimination based on the fact that they were unemployed. So, I think that this will help trial lawyers who are not having enough work, because it can open the door. Y'know we heard from our colleagues across the aisle in the preceding hour, 14 million people out of work, that's 14 million potential new clients that could go hire a lawyer and file a claim because they didn't get hired even though they were unemployed.


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