Nathan Deal Shows True Colors in Vetoing Religious Liberty Bill

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal announced this morning that he will veto HB 757, the Free Exercise Protection Act, which was passed by strong majorities of both legislative chambers. Deal has thus shown where he stands when the heat is turned up — and it’s not with Georgians of faith. The battle to protect religious liberty in Georgia has been waged over three legislative sessions. Throughout that time, Deal refused to lift a finger to help get a bill passed. If a mega-corporation or an LGBT pressure group threatened to punish the state for daring to enact free-exercise protections, Deal scurried

Why Are International Corporations Threatening Georgia’s Freedom of Religion?

Last week, Georgia’s legislature passed House Bill 757, a bill that would protect the right of faith-based groups, including churches and religious schools, to freely exercise their religion without fear of government persecution. The bill now awaits the signature of Governor Nathan Deal. Soundly rooted in the forgotten First Amendment, House Bill 757 provides critical religious freedom protections for pastors, faith-based organizations, and individuals, preventing them from being forced to perform or participate in wedding ceremonies, or otherwise provide services, that violate their sincerely held religious convictions. The bill also replicates — with respect to state and local governments —

Georgia Chamber of Commerce Aims to Shoot Down Religious Liberty Protections (Again!)

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Georgia “business leaders” are consulting with their Indiana counterparts to plot strategy for defeating religious liberty protections. This story illustrates both the essential dishonesty of the religious liberty debate and the cravenness of Big Business in America. During the 2014 legislative session in Georgia, State Sen. Josh McKoon introduced a Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) substantively identical to the federal RFRA that has been on the books for 20 years. The Georgia RFRA passed the Senate but hit turbulence in the House, where the legislation was considered during the national uproar over similar, but in some

Lessons from the Georgia Religious Liberty Fight

Last session, the Georgia House refused to pass a state RFRA (Religious Freedom Restoration Act), despite intense pressure from the base, after Coca-Cola and other iconic corporations weighed in against the bill—pitting, in an intense new way, the corporate wing of the GOP against the voter base.  Corporations wanted “anti-discrimination” language attached that would gut the possibility the RFRA would protect the little florists, bakers, print makers, and wedding photographers now being run over and put out of business if they won’t participate in serving gay wedding. The fight, a window into the soul of the GOP,  spilled over into

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