Georgia drops religion bill after Indiana, Arkansas outcry | Arkansas Blog

Friday, April 3, 2015

Georgia drops religion bill after Indiana, Arkansas outcry

Posted By on Fri, Apr 3, 2015 at 2:56 PM

"Religious freedom" legislation has died in Georgia because of the outcry in Indiana and Arkansas.

The Atlanta newspaper reports the bill could be back next year, but it also includes some counsel from Gov. Nathan Deal, a Republican, that was only partially followed in Arkansas's attempt to calm the issue:

First, stick to the language of the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act. And secondly, make sure to include an anti-discrimination clause.

Arkansas did No. 1 but would not do No. 2.

He called the anti-discrimination clause “the most important” addition.

“And that is a delicate thing to do,” he said. “There’s been so much hyperbole. It’s hard to identify what can you say without saying too much, what can you say without saying too little, and what will people read into either version.”

It was dead on arrival in Arkansas, where gay animostiy runs deep. And Gov. Asa Hutchinson, in addition to a refusal to consider that, also has now backed away from talk about executive action that would somehow indicate that — at least as to state employees — Arkansas was a welcoming place.

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