A proposed change of one word in Missouri’s employment discrimination laws is a contributing factor to a  deadlock on the issue in the state senate.

Debate on the bill has consumed most of this week’s floor time in the Senate.  Business groups claim courts have gone too far in making it easier for people to file employment discrimination suits.  Sponsor Brad Lager of Savannah wants to require those filing suit to prove discrimination was the motivating factor in their firing or lack of promotion.  The current standard requires only that it be a contributing factor.

                                        AUDIO: Lager :17 mp3

He says his proposal puts Missouri discrimination laws under the standard of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and its 1991 amendments.

Democrats are tying up the bill, complaining the bill makes it too hard for employees to protect themselves from discrimination and tilts the system too much toward business.  Or as Senator Maria Chappelle Nadal of University City puts it.

                                        AUDIO: Chappelle Nadal :05 mp3

Democrats say Republicans don’t want to compromise on anything…so the Democrats won’t allow a vote on the bill.