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Indiana Governor Mike Pence Signs Revised Religious Freedom Act

by Jane Susskind, published

It took just 7 days for Indiana Governor Mike Pence to cave to the social and moral pressure to revise the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).

“Over the past week this law has become a subject of great misunderstanding and controversy across our state and nation. However we got here, we are where we are, and it is important that our state take action to address the concerns that have been raised and move forward,” said Pence in a statement reported in the Washington Post Thursday evening.

The bill drew criticism nationwide, leading some lawmakers to ban the use of state money to travel to Indiana and some businesses to boycott sales in the state. Critics argued that by giving business owners the legal protection to deny service to someone if providing the service conflicts with their religious beliefs, the law opened the door to legal discrimination.

Read More: ‘Religious Freedom Laws': The Jim Crow Laws of the 21st Century

The revised bill clarifies that private businesses cannot use the RFRA to justify discrimination based on sexual orientation. Pence argues that the intention of the bill was never to allow discrimination and that the changes should calm these fears.

Photo: Charlie Nye, The Indianapolis Star

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