I find this highly amusing. Remember that awful Arizona law that Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed that would have allowed Christian-owned businesses to discriminate against LGBT people? Turns out that her advisers helped write it, and in fact got the language changed to their specifications.
Top aides to Gov. Jan Brewer sought and got proponents of a “religious liberty” bill to make changes to SB 1062 more than a month before she vetoed the measure.
Documents obtained by Capitol Media Services show gubernatorial counsel Joe Sciarrotta and adviser Michael Hunter met with staffers from the Center for Arizona Policy as early as January about the legislation. The documents, mainly email exchanges before and after meetings, show the alterations made in the legislation at the behest of the Brewer advisers.
CAP President Cathi Herrod said her organization made every change sought by the administration to her proposal to expand the existing state Religious Freedom Restoration Act. She said that includes deleting phrases that concerned the governor’s staff and adding provisions designed to narrow who could legally deny services to someone based on a claim of religious freedom.
Gubernatorial press aide Andrew Wilder acknowledged there were meetings over the wording of the legislation. But Wilder said there was nothing unusual about them, saying those kinds of discussions happen all the time. And Wilder said there was “absolutely” no promise made to Herrod or anyone else that Brewer would sign the legislation if they agreed to the changes.
Herrod conceded the point. “There are no guarantees on what she’s going to do on a bill,” she said.
“But the intent of the meetings, the purpose of the meetings, was to thoroughly vet the language, address their concerns, and make changes in the language pursuant to their concerns,” Herrod said. She said her organization addressed every concern raised by Hunter and Sciarrotta with the idea that this year’s version would not meet the same fate as a similar bill Brewer vetoed last year.
Clearly Brewer is lying when she said she said she vetoed it because the language was too broad. The language was what her own staff wanted. She vetoed it because she got a lot of pressure to do so, not from liberals and pro-equality types (she would have ignored them) but from Republicans who read the polls, which show that an overwhelming majority of Americans support non-discrimination policies. It’s just bad politics.
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