The state\u2019s gay community has been waiting for 30 years, so what\u2019s another 11 months? In 1983, then West Michigan GOP Rep. Jim Dressel introduced a bill to expand the state\u2019s civil rights law to include the LGBT community to protect it from housing, sexual orientation, job and all other forms of discrimination. Mr. Dressel is long gone, but the issue remains and actually shows some signs of inching toward fruition. Inching would be the operative word there. It can be reported that a bi-partisan legislative coalition is taking shape but instead of moving on it now, the decision is to wait 11 months. Eleven months? Is it because the legislative agenda is so packed? Is it because lawmakers have to go deer hunting and enjoy the holidays and don\u2019t have time? Or is it because 11 months is after the August primary election next year when most legislators will be well on their way to being re-elected and the apprehension about embracing gay rights and facing potential voter backlash is reduced? You know the correct answer. \u201cYou do it when the timing is right, and the timing is not right right now. The people (legislators) aren\u2019t ready.\u201d That from Jim Murray who runs AT&T in Michigan. He is also the self-described \u201cquarterback\u201d working in the huddle to get everyone to the goal line. He will not confirm that the August primary is the reason for the delay, but two other key players in this drama do. Mr. Murray will only say, \u201cRushing it to just rush it to do it isn\u2019t the right way to do it, and we\u2019re going to try to do it when the time is right.\u201d Privately some conservative Republicans have confided that they are inclined to vote yes, but have concluded, \u201cthey don\u2019t want to come out right now.\u201d No pun intended. Critics of the legislative process could argue, if this is the right thing to do, why don\u2019t they just do it now and not worry about their own political necks? That notion, while admirable, defies the political reality in this town, i.e. you don\u2019t vote on stuff that can get you un-elected. Think funding for roads, building a bridge and now this. As the GOP Speaker Jase Bolger likes to say this \u201cme-first\u201d attitude does not apply to every issue, but on this one, it does. But even with the 11-month wait, this expansion of the civil rights law is not a slam dunk, although they are trying to build a business coalition to convince reluctant Republicans to do this. One person they won\u2019t get is Rep. Tom McMillan (R-Oakland County). \u201cWe haven\u2019t seen any instances of discrimination,\u201d the conservative lawmaker argues. \u201cWhat we have seen is instances of when these laws are imposed, there is discrimination against Christians\u2026we see that the bullying (on this issue) actually comes from the LGBT community.\u201d Leaders in the movement counter they have a host of discriminatory examples to prove Mr. McMillan wrong. But all this remains hush-hush because no one wants this to become part of the 2014 election year dialogue back home. The theory apparently being what the voters don\u2019t know, won\u2019t hurt them and if there is discrimination against gays, they will simply have to endure it for at least another 11 months.