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Indiana Governor Signs “Fix” for Right to Discriminate Law

Friday, April 3rd, 2015

Governor Pence has signed a “fix” to the state’s right to discriminate law, but the debate is still swirling.

Here are the general updates around the law and the “fix”:

Legislature Passes the “Fix”: The Indiana House voted 66-30 to alter the divisive “religious freedom” law to remove fears that it would allow businesses to discriminate against gays and lesbians. The Indiana Senate voted 34-16 to OK changes to the “religious freedom” law. full story

Governor Pence Signs the “Fix”: Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has signed into law a measure preventing the state’s new “religious freedom” law from being used to discriminate against LGBT individuals. full story

Commerce Groups Praise “Fix”: Indiana Chamber of Commerce President Kevin Brinegar said the proposed changes that would prohibit service providers from discriminating against gays and lesbians are “what businesses and individuals from around the state, country and world needed to hear” while Indy Chamber President and CEO Michael Huber called the proposed changes “a major step in the right direction in efforts to protect the rights of all Hoosiers.” full story

“Fix” Doesn’t Go Far Enough, Groups Say: Lambda Legal and the Human Rights Campaign say the “fix” doesn’t go far enough to solve the state’s lack of protections against LGBT discrimination. full story

Angie’s List Calls “Fix” Insufficient: Angie’s List calls the revision to the “religious freedom” law “insufficient,” becoming the first major local company to reject the deal hammered out by Indiana legislators, the business community and others. full story

GOP Quiet About Law: The Washington Blade notes that few in the GOP have spoken out against the law. full story

55% Oppose Law: A HuffPost/YouGov poll found that 55 percent of people think businesses should be required to provide the same services to LGBT customers, while 31 percent said businesses should be allowed to refuse on religious grounds. The poll was taken before the “fix”. full story

Nix it Now Campaign Launches: In the wake of the Indiana experience, the National LGBTQ Task Force launched the “Nix it Now” campaign to discourage similar laws in the future. full story

Nix it Now

Anti Gay Pizza Parlor Gets Cash Bonanza: The anti-gay pizzeria that spoke out blatantly about its plans to discriminate will net almost $500K for their bigotry, thanks to an online crowdfunding page. full story

PizzaFund

We also have some analysis and opinions about the law and the “fix”:

What the “Fix” Does: According to Ian Millhiser at Think Progress, the “fix” basically prevents the law from usurping local LGBT rights laws, but does not apply to religious groups, and gives no new rights to LGBT citizens. full story

Dem’s Alternative Leaves Out Trans Citizens: Autumn Sandeen takes apart the law, and notices that the Democrats’ alternative leaves out transgender folks. full story

Gay Couple Speaks Out: A married Indiana gay couple speaks out about the law from inside the state. full story

How Hoosiers Feel About Boycot: After calls to boycott Indiana over the state’s ‘religious freedom’ law, Skylar Baker-Jordan looks at what LGBT people in the state actually think. full story

Fixes Are a Good First Step: Zack Ford at Think Progress says the “fix” is a good first step, but much more needs to be done to secure LGBT rights. full story

Law Passed Because Liberals Stayed Home: How did this law get passed in the first place? The Dallas Voice’s Hardy Haberman has the answer – liberals stayed home. full story

More states and localities consider banning travel to the state:

Maryland Governor – No Travel Ban: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan on Wednesday rejected a gay lawmaker’s request to ban state-funded travel to Indiana over its religious freedom law. full story

Colorado Governor Considers Ban: DENVER – Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper’s (D-Colorado) office says the governor has not ruled out the option of banning or discouraging official travel to Indiana by Colorado state employees, but is waiting to see the “fix” being worked on by Gov. Mike Pence (R-Indiana) and his state legislature. full story

Opponents of the las continue to speak out:

Drag Queen Argues Against Boycott: Drag Queen Lt. Moxie Anne Magnus argues for not boycotting the state, although she opposes the law. full story

moxie

Salesforce to Help Employees Relocate: Salesforce.com Inc. employees in Indiana who are uncomfortable with the state’s recently adopted Religious Freedom Restoration Act can relocate with help from the company, CEO Marc Benioff told CNN Wednesday. full story

LGBT Weekly Calls for Ban to Continue: Joel Trambley calls for continuing the boycott against the state until it repeals the law completely. full story

Ten Best Quotes: Queerty rounds up the ten best quotes opposing the law. full story

Mellancamp Speaks Out: Singer John Mellancamp, an Indiana native, speaks out against the law. full story

Boy George Calls kLaw Outdated: Out singer Boy George called the law outdated, but said he would perform in Indiana despite the state’s so-called religious freedom law. full story

Supporters of the law are still sounding off too:

Christie Defends Pence: NJ Governor Chris Christie, in his first remarks on the subject in an interview with The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday, focused on defending Pence: “I know Mike Pence, and he’s got nothing but love in his heart for people.” full story

Professors Support Marriage Equality, RFRA Laws: The Christian Post profiles three law professors who support both marriage equality and RFRA laws. full story

Ohio Group Jumps Into Fray: Citizens for Community Values, the Ohio group that successfully pushed an Ohio constitutional ban 11 years ago, is urging people to contact GOP lawmakers to preserve the right to discriminate law. full story

Senator Cotton – Be Glad You’re Not Being Hanged: Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton says gays should get some perspective on the Indiana bill and be glad they aren’t being hanged, like in Iran. full story

Jeb Bush Wavers on Support: After endorsing the law, Bush has now backtracked, saying a “better approach” would have been a “consensus-oriented” process that brought both people of faith and members of the LGBT community to the table. full story

Tweets from Supporters Who Hate “Fix”: Joe.My.God rounds up tweets from supporters of the law who hate the “fix”. full story

Perkins Says Veto the “Fix”: Tony Perkins urged the Governor to veto the “fix”. full story

NOM Urges Veto Too: The National Organization for Marriage’s Brian Brown also urged the Governor to veto the “fix”. full story

Bryan Fischer is Sad: Bryan Fischer is upset about the “fix” and says Pence can forget about any Presidential aspirations in 2016. full story

Tony Perkins is Sad, Too: In the wake of the Governor’s signing of the “fix”, Perkins says “If the government punishes people for living their faith, there are no limits to what government can control.” full story

Wolf in Sheep’s Rainbow Clothing: Thomas Peters at The American Papist vividly illustrated “Christian” fears. full story

Wolf in Sheep's Rainbow Clothing

And finally, a little comedy to lighten your day:

Funny or Die Spoofs Law: James Van Der Beek and Anna Camp play a pair of bigoted home shopping network hosts who, thanks to Indiana’s “religious freedom” bill, are now free to refuse to do business with icky gay customers. full story

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Indiana Right to Discriminate Law Updates – April 1st

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

A lot more news on the state’s right to discriminate law yesterday.

Governor Pence, appearing once again on Fox, claimed to abhor discrimination, invoking Selma:

Indiana Governor Mike Pence appeared on FOX & Friends this morning again drawing false comparisons between Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act and legislation that Bill Clinton and Barack Obama signed years ago. Pence was also asked by Steve Doocy about accusations that the law is also racist.

Pence’s response was to invoke Selma: “Five years ago my wife and my family walked the Edmund Pettus Bridge with John Lewis when I co-chaired the pilgrimage to mark the 45th anniversary of Bloody Sunday. I abhor discrimination. If I was in a restaurant and saw a business owner deny services to someone because they were gay, I wouldn’t eat there anymore. Frankly, that’s how most Hoosiers are.”

Governor Pence then held a Press conference, continuing to insist that the law does not allow discrimination, but calling again for a “fix”.

Meanwhile, two GOP leaders admitted it’s legal for a business to discriminate against the LGBT community in the state:

“This law does not create a license to discriminate, and this law does not give businesses a right to deny service to anyone,” Pence said. “I think it would be helpful if the general assembly were to get legislation to my desk that were to make that clear.” The governor, who repeated that he was “proud” to have signed the bill into law last week, rejected allegations that lawmakers intentionally sought to draft a bill that would make Indiana a less welcoming state. “I don’t believe for one minute that it was the intention of the general assembly to create a license to discriminate or deny services to anybody,” said the governor, then reiterating that he would “welcome” legislation to make that clear.

Despite Gov. Mike Pence’s insistence that Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act is all about protecting religious freedom and not about discriminating against folks, two Indiana lawmakers have admitted that even without the RFRA, businesses in their state can legally post “no gays allowed” signs. Raw Story reports that Indiana Senate President Pro Tem David Long, R-Fort Wayne, and House Speaker Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, acknowledged that because the state has no law prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, such discrimination is legal in most parts of the state.

Think Progress looks at four kinds of discrimination Pence’s track record shows he doesn’t abhor, including:

Discrimination Based On Sexual Orientation In The Workplace: While in Congress, then-Rep. Pence voted no on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which proposed to ban discrimination based on one’s sexual orientation. (Gender identity was considered too controversial at the time and stripped out of the bill, but all subsequent versions of the bill have included protections for gender identity as well as sexual orientation.)

Seth Meyers jumped into the debate, taking Governor Pence to task:

David Letterman also mocked the Governor:

Rachel Maddow also looked at the issue:

“It is a clear as day reminder of how conservative politics works in this country — at a very different level from public opinion….In the Terri Schiavo case 10 years ago and the Indiana legalize discrimination case today the rest of the country may have a very distinct revulsion for what is going on, for what politicians are doing…but inside the conservative movement they are listening to different voices, they are hearing different people, and if enough of them are in power, they get their way, as the country watches, slack-jawed and shocked, and they don’t care.”

Actor Nick Offerman, from Parks and Recd and also married to Megan Mullally, had this to say to Governor Pence:

Nick Offerman Tweet

Newsman Keith Olbermann wants the Final Four moved out of Indiana:

“The football league in this country and the college sports league in this country are tacitly supporting a law that allows those that have voluntarily chosen to join a group to discriminate and be prejudiced at the expense of those who may or may not have had any choice at all and the reality of course is not. The NCAA needs to move the Final Four out of Indianapolis and the NFL must warn Indiana and the Colts. Because ultimately you and I have a choice – do we participate in these laws, or do we do only as much as even the narrow prejudiced sports leagues of the 1930s, the 40s, and the 50s did. Opt out. Stay away, keep our business elsewhere until the laws of hate are gone.”

Meanwhile, CT Governor Dannel Malloy called on the NCAA to move the 2016 women’s Final Four out of the state:

Connecticut’s governor and UConn’s athletic director called on the NCAA on Monday to consider moving next year’s Women’s Final Four out of Indianapolis unless changes are made to Indiana’s new religious-objections law.

Greg Louganis, Jason Collins, and other gay athletes plan to protest at the NCAA Final Four:

Greg Louganis and Jason Collins and other gay athletes are planning to protest Indiana’s ‘religious freedom’ law during the NCAA Final Four, despite Gov Mike Pence’s promise to ‘fix’ the law before the national college basketball championship begins on Saturday… ‘It should be totally repealed,’ Louganis, whose husband is from Indiana, said on the ABC podcast Capital Games. ‘Everybody should feel embraced. And I feel that the majority of the populace of Indiana do embrace all people. I felt very embraced… They’ve been so wonderful. This is just so contrary to my feelings of Indiana people.’

Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie attacked the law:

“The recent passage of the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act has brought significant negative attention to the state of Indiana throughout the nation and indeed the world, because the law is widely viewed as signaling an unwelcoming and discriminatory atmosphere in our state. For its part, Indiana University remains steadfast in our longstanding commitment to value and respect the benefits of a diverse society. It is a fundamental core value of our culture at Indiana University and one that we cherish. To that end, Indiana University will recruit, hire, promote, educate and provide services to persons without regard to their age, race, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, marital status, national origin, religion, sexual orientation or veteran status. Equally importantly, we will not tolerate discrimination on the basis of any of these same factors.”

Even Nascar has denounced the new law:

“NASCAR is disappointed by the recent legislation passed in Indiana. We will not embrace nor participate in exclusion or intolerance. We are committed to diversity and inclusion within our sport and therefore will continue to welcome all competitors and fans at our events in Indiana and anywhere else we race.”

Nike also stood up against the new law:

“NIKE proudly stands for inclusion for all. We believe laws should treat people equally and prevent discrimination. NIKE has led efforts alongside other businesses to defeat discriminatory laws in Oregon and opposes the new law in Indiana which is bad for our employees, bad for our consumers, bad for business and bad for society as a whole. We hope Indiana will quickly resolve this.”

Honeymaid once again supported LGBT rights

Honeymaid Indiana Ad with an ad targeting the state:

Towleroad.com has a list of many of the companies who have now come out in opposition:

Dozens of companies are taking action against Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act including NASCAR (below), Anthem, Cummins, Dow, Roche, Starbucks, Apple, Angie’s List, PayPal co-founder Max Levchin (below), YELP, Salesforce, Eli Lilly, NBA, WNBA, Indiana Pacers and Indiana Fever (below), Marriott (below), NCAA, and Gen Con:

The New York Times looks at how tech companies have come together in opposition to the law:

The technology industry’s leaders have found their collective voice on a social issue in the last week, rallying with great intensity against a new Indiana law that will allow businesses, they predict, to discriminate against gay couples. The heads of Apple, Salesforce.com, Yelp and Square have all publicly criticized the law, as have some leaders from other industries. But on many other issues of the day that ignite strong passions — from race relations to income inequality to gun control — tech leaders are much quieter.

Washington DC just banned official travel to the state:

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser on Tuesday issued an executive order banning the use of city funds for travel to Indiana in response to the state’s approval of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which critics say will allow businesses to discriminate against LGBT people. – See more at: http://www.washingtonblade.com/2015/03/31/bowser-bans-d-c-government-travel-to-indiana/#sthash.Tehxv4Gz.dpuf

Former Maryland Governor and likely Democratic presidential candidate Martin O’Malley called out GOP candidates for their support of the law and others like it:

“I think it’s shameful that presidential candidates in this day and age would try to give cover to a law that is sweeping across a lot of Republican-governed states,” he said, and that would “give license to the discrimination of gay and lesbian people.” He said: “It’s not who we are as a country.”

The Indianapolis visitor’s bureau hi-lighted the city’s LGBT friendliness yesterday:

Yesterday, visitindy.com added a new graphic to its website to highlight that it welcomes everyone to the city of the Indianapolis. While the nation has been focused upon the issues surrounding the Religious Freedom Restoration Act passed in Indiana last week, it gets lost that many of the citizens of Indiana are fair-minded welcoming people.

VisitIndy

In the midst of the controversy, the Rolling Stones announced their tour dates:

The Rolling Stones announced a North American tour Tuesday which will include a stop in a now-controversial location — Indianapolis, Ind. The band has scheduled a concert at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 4 near the end of the two-month tour. The Speedway is one of the largest venues they’ll play in, capable of holding roughly 400,000 fans.

Although Connecticut’s Governor has banned official state travel to Indiana, a UoC coach may still attend the Final Four:

University of Connecticut basketball coach Kevin Ollie could still travel to Indiana for the Final Four and the National Association of Basketball Coaches convention this week, despite an Indiana travel ban Connecticut Gov. Daniel Malloy imposed on all state employees, CT News reports… Ollie’s appearance at the hoops extravaganza is likely part of a contractual obligation that was hammered out long before the controversy, Hearst Connecticut Media has learned.

An Indiana Pizza Shop is thrilled they can now legally discriminate against gays without fear of penalty:

Memories Pizza, a pizza shop owned by the O’Connor family in Walker, Indiana, says they’re happy Governor Mike Pence signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act because it backs up their beliefs, and if they were asked to cater a gay wedding, they wouldn’t. Said Crystal O’Connor to ABC57: “If a gay couple was to come in and they wanted us to provide pizzas for their wedding, we would have to say no…We are a Christian establishment…We’re not discriminating against anyone, that’s just our belief and anyone has the right to believe in anything. We definitely agree with the bill. I do not think it’s targeting gays. I don’t think it’s discrimination. It’s supposed to help people that have a religious belief.”

Anti-gay commentator Todd Starnes is pissed that Pence is not holding the line on discrimination:

Pence in reaction to question about protecting Christian business: This law does not give anyone a license to discriminate.” #shameful. Pence wants a religious liberty bill that does not protect religious liberty. #cowardice #capitulation #spineless

Glenn Beck thinks the reaction to the bill will lead to concentration camps:

The Advocate rounds up GOP Presidential candidate reactions – so far all in favor:

Except for Chris Christie and Rand Paul, who haven’t yet commented directly on Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act… several Republican heavy hitters have lined up to echo Gov. Pence’s unwavering support for the law as it was passed. Here’s what the Republicans reportedly considering a presidential run in 2016 have said about Indiana’s law.

Focus on the Family claims liberals have launched a war on the freedom of religion:

Rush Limbaugh also “rushed” to the law’s defense:

Good old Rush Limbaugh. Not content with claiming that same-sex marriage will lead to incest, he’s now got a bee in his bonnet because you might want to marry your dolphin or something. Addressing the backlash to Indiana’s ‘right to discriminate’ law on the March 31st edition of The Rush Limbaugh Show, he argues that the ban is “not about honoring…discrimination against homosexuality, it’s about people whose religious beliefs prohibit them from engaging in activity which lends credence in support of gay marriage.” Nothing out of the ordinary so far. However, Limbaugh goes on to claim that a “UK woman who wanted to marry her dog…I think..and did…you remember that? She married a dolphin… ok, whatever. She wanted to marry an animal that was not a man…”

Rick Santorum announced his support of the state’s law and others like it:

The only sensitivity training we need is to respect every person. Tolerance is the most misused word in the English language. Tolerance means you can say really horrible nasty things that I hate and offend me. That’s how we get along. You have a right to be mean — a right to be nasty to people. That’s how this country works, because we have thick skins and we aren’t offended. Should a gay or lesbian-owned printshop have to print signs for the Westboro Baptists that say ‘God hates fags’? Should a Jewish printshop have to make signs for the KKK? Should a kosher deli have to serve non-kosher food? It’s a two-way street. Tolerance is a two-way street. If you’re saying that ‘your religious liberties are not as important as my — fill in the blank,’ then I’ve got a problem with that.

Several anti-gay “Christian” groups are now boycotting Angie’s List to punish the company for its opposition to the law:

The FRC’s boycott announcement came hours after the same move yesterday by the AFA’s One Million Moms: Angie’s List, a company that lists crowd-sourced recommendations for local services, decided that religious freedom wasn’t good for business and has threatened to suspend plans to expand its Indianapolis headquarters because of the passage of the law. Bottom line: Angie’s List takes the position that religious freedom is bad for business. We, on the other hand, think freedom is the foundation for good business. Businesses that undermine freedom — especially our First Freedom — ultimately undermine their own business. If you have a membership to Angie’s List, I urge you to cancel your membership and show them that as a supporter of religious liberty, you won’t stand for paying dues to a company that disregards the freedom of people to live their daily lives according to what they believe. When you cancel, politely let them know the reason why.

The Washington Post looks at how businesses have shifted on anti-LGBT discrimination:

Economists used to assume that discrimination helped firms attract customers and workers who themselves supported discrimination. As economists such as Gary Becker and Milton Friedman argued, if the customers didn’t care, the owner would pay a penalty in higher wages or lost business from refusing to hire or serve certain groups. As Rampell writes, the Indiana example shows that businesses’ concerns have shifted.

The Indy Star looks at the impact the controversy in the state is having on similar bills in other states:

A “religious freedom” measure similar to Indiana’s is close to becoming law in Arkansas, despite the national uproar and economic boycott Indiana faces as Gov. Mike Pence scrambles to change his state’s law… “To the extent that both Georgia and Indiana have larger populations, and Atlanta and Indianapolis are big magnets for large events, I think the business pressure is more salient there than it is in Arkansas,” he said. And that’s despite the fact that one of the opponents to the Arkansas measure is heavyweight Wal-Mart.

Governor Mike Pence Gives Indiana the Right to Discriminate Against Gays

Friday, March 27th, 2015

Governor Mike PenceGovernor Mike Pence opened the floodgates to anti LGBT discrimination, signing a right to discriminate bill yesterday.

Think Progress reports:

As expected, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) signed into law the so-called “Religious Freedom Restoration Act” (RFRA) Thursday morning in a private ceremony. Proponents of this bill had openly admitted that its intent was to enable businesses to discriminate against same-sex couples, but Pence dismissed those claims in a statement he issued about the bill. “This bill is not about discrimination,” he said, “and if I thought it legalized discrimination in any way in Indiana, I would have vetoed it. In fact, it does not even apply to disputes between private parties unless government action is involved. For more than twenty years, the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act has never undermined our nation’s anti-discrimination laws, and it will not in Indiana.”

Somebody has his head, um, let’s just say in the sand.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Indiana.

Image via FB – Governor Mike Pence

Indiana Passes Anti Gay Right to Discriminate Bill

Tuesday, March 24th, 2015

Indiana Governor Mike PenceA right to discriminate law just passed the Indiana legislature.

Melanie Nathan reports:

Governor Mike Pence (R-Indiana) is being urged to veto SB 101, a piece of legislation that would be one of the most anti-LGBT laws in the nation. The legislation allows individuals to ignore any law they deem to conflict with their religious beliefs. A broad coalition of groups in Indiana is against the proposed law including civil rights and faith leaders, small business owners and the Indiana Chamber of Commerce.

A campaign has been launched to ask Governor Mike Pence to veto the bill:

“As a seminary graduate, this bill is deeply offensive,” said Heather Cronk, co-director of GetEQUAL. “The fact that religion is being used as a smokescreen for deeply hateful and vile sentiments by right-wing extremists, and then cemented into law, is not just un-Christian – it’s un-American.”

As activist Scott Wooledge puts it: “I’ve engaged in the battles against these bill in Arkansas, Arizona, and Tennessee in 2011. My message to those pushing these regressive, reactionary “religious freedom” laws is we will follow you to whatever state you try this and we will fight you aggressively. And my message to our allies and friends is we will pressure to defend your LGBT friends’ and workers’ right to live their lives free of discrimination.”

Scott McCorkle, CEO of the Salesforce Marketing Cloud of Indianapolis, has also said SB 101 threatens future growth in Indiana. “Our success is fundamentally based on our ability to attract and retain the best and most diverse pool of highly skilled employees…” The Indiana Chamber of Commerce, engine maker Cummins, health-care provider Eskenazi Health and pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly and Co. have also voiced concerns about SB 101’s impact on their businesses.

The Governor doesn’t seem inclined to listen:

Indiana Governor Mike Pence released a statement following the House passage yesterday of SB 101, a sweeping bill that would allow Indiana business owners to refuse service to customers based on religious beliefs.

Said Pence: “The legislation, SB 101, is about respecting and reassuring Hoosiers that their religious freedoms are intact. I strongly support the legislation and applaud the members of the General Assembly for their work on this important issue. I look forward to signing the bill when it reaches my desk.”

Dark days in Indiana – how soon will the first case test this new discriminatory law?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources.

USA, Indiana: Governor Wants Civil Unions Ban Restored in Senate

Friday, January 31st, 2014

Indiana Governor Mike PenceGovernor Mike Pence wants the Indiana Senate to restore the “second sentence” of the marriage equality ban so that it can go to voters this year.

Edge Boston reports:

Republican Gov. Mike Pence is asking Indiana lawmakers to send a proposed state constitutional ban on gay marriage to voters this year. House lawmakers removed a provision banning civil unions from the proposed amendment this week. That change threatens to push back a statewide referendum on the issue until 2016. Pence told WISH-TV (http://bit.ly/1elU2kE ) Friday that he wants to see the civil unions ban restored to the proposed amendment. Pence also said he is done talking about gay marriage until the General Assembly ends its 2014 session in mid-March.

Dot 429 says the ban will be heard in the Senate the week of 2/10:

Indiana’s marriage equality ban legislation is set to be heard by the Senate Rules Committee the week of February 10, according to Republican Senate President Pro Tem David Long’s announcement on Thursday, January 30. The decision was contrary to Long’s previous position, in which he argued that the bill should be sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee; according to the Journal Gazette, he stated that he considered the Rules Committee to be a better representation of chamber leadership and therefore the best choice for the legislation.

If the Senate does restore the civil unions ban, will the house go along and vote for the bill? Or will it stick to its guns and thereby delay its potential passage until 2016?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Indiana.

USA, Indiana: More Ban Opposition; Gov Pence Wants Ban Passed; Church Objects to Firing

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

IndianaWe have three marriage equality-related stories out of Indiana this morning.

First off, two more Indiana cities are standing up against the proposed gay marriage ban.

Edge Boston reports:

The South Bend and Muncie councils both voted Monday night to adopt resolutions against the proposed constitutional amendment being considered by state legislators. The South Bend resolution was approved on a 6-2 vote, while the Muncie resolution was adopted in a 9-0 vote. South Bend Councilman Dave Varner, the council’s only Republican, said he voted against the resolution because he believed voters should be allowed to decide the issue in a statewide referendum. About 15 people spoke in favor of the resolution before the council voted, which didn’t sway Varner, the South Bend Tribune reported.

Indiana Governor Mike Pence (R) is eager to get the controversy off his plate.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

Republican Gov. Mike Pence says the debate over whether to amend Indiana’s constitution to ban same-sex marriage should be decided “once and for all” this year. Pence reiterated his support for traditional marriage during his State of the State address Tuesday and said voters should decide the matter in November. He urged “civility and respect” during the debate that already has brought hundreds of activists to the Statehouse.

“Let’s have a debate worthy of our people with civility and respect. Let’s protect the rights of Hoosier employers to hire who they want and provide them with benefits that they earn. And then let’s resolve this issue this year once and for all,” he said, to applause from the assembled lawmakers, a majority of whom are Republicans.

And finally, an Indiana church saw 80% of its flock leave after a gay choir director was fired.

On Top Magazine reports:

A United Methodist Church congregation in Alexandria, Indiana dwindled by 80 percent after the church forced out its gay choir director. Adam Fraley told The Herald Bulletin that he lost his job because of his sexual orientation. Fraley – who attended services with his partner but was not open about his sexuality while working at the church – held the position for six years. He resigned in the spring, saying that a new minister made him uncomfortable.

In September, David Mantor was appointed as new interim minister. David Steele, who represents the congregation, asked Mantor to bring back Fraley. Mantor initially agreed, but three weeks later he fired Fraley and the following day told Steele he could no longer serve. Steele refused to quit, but church leaders backed Mantor. Church law states that non-celibate gay people cannot be “appointed to serve in The United Methodist Church.”

Anyone hear when the Indiana House committee will actually take a vote on the proposed ban?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Indiana.

USA, Indiana: GOP Pushes Marriage Equality Ban; Gays Could Go to Jail

Monday, July 8th, 2013

Indiana Governor Mike PenceEven after the landmark Supreme Court rulings for marriage equality, the Indiana GOP keeps running the other way. Governor Mike Pence is supporting an effort to add a constitutional ban in the state. On Top Magazine reports:

“Now that the Supreme Court has had its say on the federal government’s role in defining marriage, the people of Indiana should have their say about how marriage is understood and defined in our state,” Pence said last week. “Given that opportunity, I am confident that Hoosiers will reaffirm our commitment to traditional marriage and will consider this important question with civility and respect for the values and dignity of all of the people of our state. I look forward to supporting efforts by members of the Indiana General Assembly to place a constitutional amendment on the ballot for voter consideration next year.”

Pence isn’t the only one talking smack about Indiana’s gay and lesbian couples. A political blogger wants gays thrown in jail for asking for a marriage license. Joe.My.God reports:

According to an Indiana politics blog, any gay couple in that state who applies for a marriage license faces up to three years in prison. “A 1997 state law declares it a Class D felony to submit false information on a marriage license application or lie about the physical condition, including gender, of a marriage license applicant. Two men or two women seeking to marry inevitably would trigger the law, as the state’s electronic marriage license application specifically designates “male applicant” and “female applicant” sections for gathering required background data.”

Yes, Indiana, by all means, start throwing gay and lesbian couples into jail for requesting a marriage license. We could use a few martyrs over there.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Indiana.