/Opponents implore governor to veto religious objections bill

Opponents implore governor to veto religious objections bill

Opponents claim it allows discrimination against transgender, gay, and lesbian individuals on religious grounds. The bill’s supporters claim it protects the rights of those whose religious beliefs prohibit them from offering legal or business services to gay couples who want to marry. The House had already voted to submit a motion to reconsider and sent it to the governor. “I’m clearly disappointed that the legislative body didn’t do their jobs, and (the speaker) of the House of Representatives ignored the citizens of the state, and [the speaker] ignored the business community,” stated Chad Griffin, president of Human Rights Campaign, a national advocacy organization. Griffin pointed out that nearly a dozen businesses had issued statements against House Bill 1523 since it was passed by the Senate last week. These include AT&T and IBM, Levi Strauss & Co. (MGM Resorts), Mass Mutual, Levi Strauss & Co. (MGM Resorts), Hyatt Hotels. Toyota, Tyson Foods, and Nissan. The Mississippi Economic Council issued a statement disapproving the legislation. “As the State Chamber of Commerce, Mississippi has proven itself to be hospitable, business-friendly, and has stopped efforts that would prevent Mississippi businesses from implementing and enforce non-discrimination laws or that would limit diversity or inclusion impacting their customers or employees, MEC opposes any effort that would inadvertently or intentionally hinder Mississippi’s ability to do so.” The Mississippi Manufacturers Association was concerned that the bill would violate the diversity policies of its members and could harm the image of the state. Bryant should veto this bill. Last week, Gov. Nathan Deal vetoed the Georgia legislature’s similar bill. If the bill became law, companies such as Delta Airlines and Disney would not do business in Georgia. Griffin stated that “CEOs of this state and from all over the country have been able be at the table, in other states that’ve considered such matters.” “And that is why the Republican governor in South Dakota vetoed another hateful bill. Georgia’s Republican governor did the exact same thing recently.” Gov. Bryant’s office didn’t respond to a request for comment.