Pence: We Need To Confront The Idea That Religious Freedom Law Is Discrimination

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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) addresses the press on the controversy surrounding the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). Pence called for a "fix" and explained how supporters of the law need to confront the idea that it is discrimination.

GOV. MIKE PENCE (R-IN): Let me say first and foremost, as I've said to each one of them, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) was about religious liberty, not about discrimination. As I said last week, had this law been about legalizing discrimination, I would have vetoed it. This law does not give anyone a license to discriminate. The Religious Freedom Restoration Act in Indiana does not give anyone the right to deny services to anyone in this state. It is simply a balancing test used by our federal courts and jurisdictions across the country for more than two decades.

Now let me say on the subject of the bill itself. I don't believe for a minute that it was the intention of the General Assembly to create a license to discriminate or right to deny services to gays, lesbians or anyone else in this state. And it certainly wasn't my intent. But I can appreciate that that's become the perception. Not just here in Indiana, but all across this country and we need to confront that, and confront it boldly in a way that respects the interests of all involved.

Personal reflection for a moment if I can. I abhor discrimination. The way I was raised was like most Hoosiers, with the golden rule; that you should do unto others as you would have them do unto you. And I believe in my heart of hearts that no one should be harassed or mistreated because of who they are, who they love or what they believe. And I believe every Hoosier shares that conviction.

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