The push-back against Pence’s Right to Discriminate law came from an odd direction today, when Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, a Republican, responded by issuing an executive order that would require all businesses to follow the city’s human rights ordinance.
Proponents of the law claim that it allows people to avoid violating their “religious beliefs”; reality, meanwhile, tells a different story: it legalizes discrimination on the basis of “religious beliefs.” At a press conference on Monday, Ballard said that he would issue an executive order that would put the kibosh on any potential discrimination caused by the law.
Ballard said during the Monday press conference, “Our city thrives because we have welcomed and embraced diversity. And RFRA threatens what thousands have spent decades building. Discrimination is wrong. And I hope that message is being heard loud and clear at our Statehouse.”
His remarks come after the NCAA President, Mark Emmert, expressed concern about holding sports events, including the Final Four, in Indianapolis if lawmakers couldn’t deign themselves to address the potential for discrimination present in the law.
Ballard promised those attending the Final Four basketball tournament next weekend that, “Indianapolis will not be defined by this. Indianapolis welcomes everybody.”
Is he motivated by a strong desire to keep the Final Four in the city? I guess it depends on how cynical you want to be. But either way, it’s good to see some Republican criticism against this awful law.
Watch his remarks below: