On Monday, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal announced that he would be vetoing a bill that many believe would limit the rights of the state’s LGBT community.
House Bill 757, would have given faith-based organizations in Georgia the right to refuse services and jobs to gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people. The bill’s supporters claimed that the goal of the legislation was to protect religious freedom, while critics said the bill was a clear attempt to limit the rights of LGBT people.
“I do not think we have to discriminate against anyone to protect the faith-based community in Georgia, of which I and my family have been a part of for all of our lives,” said Deal. The governor’s decision was “about the character of our state and the character of our people. Georgia is a welcoming state. It is full of loving, kind and generous people. … I intend to do my part to keep it that way. For that reason I will veto House Bill 757,” he said.
Gov. Nathan Deal speaks about his decision to veto House Bill 757
The proposition of the bill drew harsh criticism from major companies. Companies like Coca-Cola, Home Depot and other Fortune 500 companies based in Atlanta spoke out against the bill. Disney said that if the bill passes, it would no longer film in the state, and the NFL said that it could cost Atlanta the chance to host the Super Bowl.
The bill has seen contest in the House and Senate, falling short of the two-thirds majority needed for overriding Gov. Deal’s veto. Both chambers of the Republican-dominated Georgia Legislature passed the bill a few weeks ago.