With 20 Of The 50 States Having RFRA Laws, 12 More Planning To Join The List, Why Are We Focusing On Indiana?

Many ask us why re we fighting so hard in Indiana, when the fight in Arizona did not seem as engaged.  Did you know that there are now 20 states with RFRA laws?

Forty percent of U.S. states have something similar to Indiana, as does the federal government.

A federal RFRA signed by President Clinton in 1993 shares language with Indiana and other states' bills, prohibiting the government from "substantially burdening" individuals' exercise of religion unless it is for a "compelling government interest" and is doing so in the least restrictive means.

The fact that legislation like this is so widespread probably gave Pence some confidence in signing the bill, despite the controversy in Arizona last year over its bill that was ultimately scrapped, and in other states, like Georgia, which are considering similar measures this year. – WashingtonPost.com

Why are states doing this now?  Why do they feel they need to create RFRA laws?  Is it because of the progression of same-sex marriage rights across the nation?  Or do they believe they are filling a void left by the federal government?

In 1997, in the City of Boerne v. Flores decision, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) did not apply to the states.

Since 1997, 19 20 states have enacted state RFRAs. These laws are intended to echo the federal RFRA, but are not necessarily identical to the federal law. – www.ncsl.org

Here is a list of the States and their laws. Are these untouchable laws?  How come we have not fought against these laws on a national scale, but national corporations are taking the fight to Indiana?  Should we ask Salesforce to boycott these states as well?

www.ncsl.org

If nothing is done about the proposal of these laws, the map above will have increased to 32 states having RFRA Laws.  32 out of 50 states. 64% of the country.  So to the answer, why are we fighting so hard in Indiana?  If we don't fight there, there will be an avalanche soon and a majority of the nation will be legally allowed to discriminate.  Imagine if Salesforce keeps up the same policy it has against Indiana, by the end of this year, it would be limiting itself to 18 states.

States colored in red already have new RFRA laws being proposed this year.  Add that to the dark green states already having laws, it doesn't look that good.  But are all the proposed and existing RFRA laws the same?  Below is a list of legislation with final disposition listed alongside the bill when applicable.  Enacted legislation is in bold. – www.ncsl.org

www.ncsl.org

 

What do you think?