Ohio Withdraws Anti-Gay, Religious Protections Bill
As predicted, Arizona's proposed "religious protections" bill, which would have allowed businesses to discriminate against gays, has made an impact around the nation. However, thanks to Gov. Jan Brewer's veto of the legislation, it appears that impact may be positive--at least for now.
Ohio has withdrawn similar legislation following the outpouring of negative attention that Arizona received for the proposed bill.
State lawmakers in Ohio withdrew legislation Wednesday that mirrors an Arizona bill that’s come under fire for protecting those who assert their religious beliefs in refusing service to gays.
Republican state Rep. Tim Derickson and Democratic state Rep. Bill Patmon issued a joint statement citing concern over the bill’s unintended consequences.
“The intent of (our bill) was to ensure Ohioans’ religious freedom by protecting their ability to freely worship and preventing any laws from burdening the free exercise of religion,” their statement said. “However, with the controversy that is occurring in Arizona, we feel that it is in the best interest of Ohioans that there be no further consideration of this legislation.”
Debate on the bill has been indefinitely postponed, House Speaker William Batchelder’s office said.
Let's hope other states contemplating similar legislation make the same decision.