Houston mayor ardently laments rejection of equal rights measure

Houston Mayor Annise Parker is blaming the rejection of an ordinance that would have established nondiscrimination protections for gay and transgender people on “fear mongering” and “deliberate lies” by opponents.

Voters failed to approve the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance on Tuesday after a nearly 18-month battle.

Opponents focused their campaign on one part of the ordinance related to use of public bathrooms by transgender men and women they alleged would open the door for sexual predators to go into women’s restrooms.

The openly gay mayor told more than 100 people at an election night watch party in downtown Houston that the opponents’ campaign was part of an effort to demonize the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

Parker says the defeat doesn’t mean the end of efforts to get the ordinance passed.

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