Pressure Grows For Gov. Brewer To Veto 'Anti-Gay' Bill

Arizona's Republican Governor Jan Brewer has until Friday to sign or veto the measure.

Pressure Grows For Gov. Brewer To Veto 'Anti-Gay' Bill
Flickr / Gage Skidmore

Its supporters say it protects a person's right to religious freedom. But critics say it amounts to state-sanctioned discrimination. 

Senate Bill 1062 updates existing Arizona state law and legally protects private business owners and individuals who deny service to gay customers — as long as they assert their religious beliefs as a reason for doing so. (Via KTVK

The GOP-sponsored legislation is currently sitting on Arizona Republican Gov. Jan Brewer's desk. She has until Friday to sign or veto it and has offered few clues on how she'll act. (Via Office of Gov. Jan Brewer

"I think anybody that owns a business can choose who they work with or who they don't work with … But I don't know that it needs to be statutory." (Via CNN

Meanwhile, she faces intensifying pressure to veto the bill from lawmakers in her own party, advocacy groups and business leaders who say not only is the measure is discriminatory, but it could put the state's economy at risk. 

The state’s two U.S. Senators, John McCain and Jeff Flake — both Republicans — used Twitter to publicly call on Brewer to veto the bill.

They're joined by three Republican state lawmakers who initially voted for the bill but are now urging the governor not to sign it. (Via Los Angeles Times

Businesses including Apple, American Airlines, Marriott Hotels, and the NFL have come out against the legislation. (Via MSNBC)

But supporters of the bill have launched a campaign of their own, arguing the bill is needed to protect those with strongly held religious beliefs from activist courts. 

They point to the case of a New Mexico photographer sued after he refused to shoot a lesbian couple’s commitment ceremony. (Via Breitbart

A statement from one of the groups that helped draft the bill called the negative attention surrounding it, "politics at its absolute worst." (Via Center for Arizona Policy

Similar legislation has been introduced in about a half a dozen other states, but Arizona’s is the only to have passed.