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McCrory expresses displeasure with NC 'religious freedom' law proposals

Posted March 30, 2015

Gov. Pat McCrory delivers his State of the State address on Feb. 4, 2015.

— Gov. Pat McCrory told a Charlotte radio host Monday that he opposes a bill that would allow magistrates to opt out of performing weddings and didn't see the need for a broader religious freedom bill.

"What is the problem they're trying to solve?" McCrory asked during Monday's broadcast of WFAE's Charlotte Talks program.

Large parts of the program focused on situations where McCrory had differences with conservative Republicans at the state legislature, particularly in the state Senate.

Senators have already passed a bill that would allow magistrates opt out of performing weddings if they have a "sincere religious objection" to performing particular ceremonies. The measure, which is now making its way through the House, is seen as a way to shield magistrates who do not want to perform same-sex marriages.

North Carolina's constitutional amendment and a related law blocking same-sex marriages was overturned by a federal court last year.

"At this time, I would not sign it the way it's written because ... I don't think you should have an exemption or a carve-out when you swore an oath to the constitution of North Carolina or to the Constitution of the United States of America," McCrory said.

During the same discussion, McCrory said he didn't see the need for a broader religious freedom bill that would protect a number of businesses and state officials from liability should they refuse service based on their personal religious beliefs. The topic of the "Religious Freedom Restoration Act" was at the center of national media attention this weekend, as leaders of large companies said they did not want to do businesses in states that pass such legislation.

In an op-ed for the Washington Post, for example, Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook said such laws "rationalize injustice by pretending to defend something many of us hold dear. They go against the very principles our nation was founded on, and they have the potential to undo decades of progress toward greater equality."

McCrory told WFAE that many of the policies expressed in religious freedom bills "make no sense." It was unclear from the conversation whether McCrory would veto such a religious freedom bill, but it was clear he did not think the measure was needed.

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  • James Henderson Apr 4, 2015
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    "In Bloomington, Evansville, Fort Wayne and Michigan City, for example, civil rights agencies cannot pursue complaints of discrimination based on sexual orientation, unless the accused person or business agrees to an investigation."
    You were right about one thing: you are not my teacher (nor are you qualified to be!)

  • Collin McLoud Apr 2, 2015
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    First of all, there have been court cases where it had been ruled that sexual orientation is covered under Title VII. I've already looked it up. You do the research if you must know. I'm not your teacher.
    Why should your right to be treated equally supersede another persons religious rights?
    How can you expect others to be tolerant when you are not being tolerant yourself? Everyone has rights and sometimes those rights may conflict with each other.

  • James Henderson Apr 1, 2015
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    Please show me where in Title VII orientation is addressed. The law covers gender stereotyping. It does not, however, protect against harassment based on sexual orientation.

  • James Henderson Apr 1, 2015
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    Why should your religion, which you choose to believe (without actual proof), supersede my right to be treated equally?

  • Anthony Snark Mar 31, 2015
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    This law has nothing to do with common sense.

  • Charlie Watkins Mar 31, 2015
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    With stands like this Gov. McCrory may send out the message that we are not all backward.

    Glad to see the Gov being pragmatic.

  • Jimmy Freeman Mar 30, 2015
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    I see a few people that understand that 'public servants' cannot rightfully, and legally, make exemptions for themselves and others working in the 'public service sector' which essentially places them above the Law of the Land. It is rare that I agree with any Politian, but would say that Mr. McCory has it right.

  • Floyd Bridges Mar 30, 2015
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    Don't know what your point is.
    What part of the Christian Bible you believe supports slavery?

    The most addressed issue in the Bible is the salvation of mankind from sin. Today secular humanist may refer to sin as the "human condition" or simply as character flaws".

    Now hurry up and go to one of those online Bible verse search engines to support your statement.

  • Arthur Raleigh Mar 30, 2015
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    The bible supports slavery as this is the most addressed issue in the bible.

  • Floyd Bridges Mar 30, 2015
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    Exactly.

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