David Jackson, USA TODAY
WASHINGTON President Obama plans to sign an executive order banning federal contractors from discriminating against employees based on sexual orientation, administration officials said Monday.
The order will mirror a Senate bill designed to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) workers from employment discrimination, a proposal that had languished in the House.
Federal law already bans discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, gender and national origin.
Administration officials said Obama has directed his staff to prepare an executive order that would prohibit federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
The officials, requesting anonymity to discuss internal deliberations, said they did not know when the paperwork would be ready for Obama's signature.
They disclosed the plan a day before Obama is scheduled to address an LGBT gala in New York City sponsored by the Democratic National Committee.
This is the latest example of Obama authorizing an executive order designed in part to get around a Republican-run House that has blocked his initiatives.
Previous Obama orders have raised the minimum wage for federal contract workers, and increased the number of workers eligible for overtime pay.