BOISE, Idaho — Thousands of Idahoans have flocked to the Statehouse to testify in front of lawmakers concerning a bill that would include sexual orientation and gender identity protections to the state's Human Rights Act.

The legislation, commonly called the "Add the Words" bill, had been denied a public hearing for nine consecutive years.

As of Monday morning, testifiers had filled every seat in the Lincoln Auditorium in the Idaho Capitol as well as three overflow rooms.

Republican state Rep. Tom Loertscher of Iona says the House State Affairs Committee will listen to testimony until the House convenes at 11:30 a.m. The committee will resume testimony at 5 p.m.