Dan Gilmore / Apr. 14, 2015

Louisiana Timidly Considers Religious Liberty Legislation

Just like Indiana and Arkansas, Louisiana started to consider its own version of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, but it seems the threat of pushback may dissuade state lawmakers. The president of Louisiana’s Senate, Republican John Alario, said, “As it was originally introduced, I’m not in favor of it. It would put Louisiana in such a bad light, we don’t want any part of it.” Whatever happened to trading short-term discomfort for long-term benefit? The state’s governor, Bobby Jindal, said he would fight for legislation like the RFRA “that seeks to preserve our most fundamental freedoms.” The opposition to state-level RFRAs could be nothing more than a heckler’s veto. According to a poll conducted by WPA Opinion Research on behalf of the Family Research Council, 81% of those polled “agree that government should leave people free to follow their beliefs about marriage as they live their daily lives at work and in the way they run their businesses.” But Louisiana lawmakers are scared of the shrill 19% who want government to tell small businesses to bake the cake, to serve the hypothetical pizzas, regardless of the business owner’s most deeply held beliefs. More…

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