American political pundit and columnist, Kirsten Powers, has taken aim at the latest state to propose a bill that protects religious liberty. According to our friends at The Foundry, the Arizona bill SB1062 is an amendment to the 1999 state Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) that “protects all citizens and the associations they form from undue burdens by the government on their religious liberty or from private lawsuits that would have the same result.” Powers recently wrote a column that she purposefully and erroneously titled “Arizona Latest to Attack Gay Rights,” calling SB1062 “an abomination of a bill.”
IMPORTANT UPDATE: Late yesterday evening, AZ Governor Jan Brewer (R) vetoed SB 1062. Click HERE to read Cathi Herrod’s, president of Center for Arizona Policy, statement on this veto. Cathi (pictured left) and the state family policy council that she leads in AZ were strong proponents of this bill to protect individual liberties.
“This measure should have been a political no-brainer but only went down because people either chose to ignore the plain language of the bill or refused to read it altogether. Apparently, they’re graduates of the Pelosi School of Policy, where they dispose of bills before they find out what’s in them.
This bill like the federal RFRA, bars government discrimination against religious exercise, so by vetoing this bill Gov. Brewer is saying she supports government discrimination against people’s religious freedoms.
Under the amended Religious Freedom Restoration Act, what was legislative intent (but ignored by certain courts) would have been clear: individuals do not have to trade their religious freedom for entrance into public commerce. In other words, whether it’s a wedding vendor, whose orthodox Christian faith will not allow her to affirm same-sex ‘marriage,’ or a business like Hobby Lobby or Conestoga Wood, whose faith bars them from providing drugs that have the potential to end a pregnancy, the provisions of RFRA would apply.
Unfortunately, at a moment of testing, Governor Jan Brewer yielded to the cultural bullies and their frenzy-driven opposition instead of consulting the facts,” concluded Perkins.”