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Rauner “troubled” by new Indiana law

Monday, Mar 30, 2015

* I asked the governor’s office if Gov. Rauner had made or would make any comments on Indiana’s new law allowing corporations and individuals to discriminate against gays and others based on their religious beliefs…

Hi, Rich:

Here is what the governor said on the issue in Peoria last night in a media avail:

    Question: Any thoughts on what’s going on in Indiana right now regarding the religious freedom restoration act?

    “I’ve read a bit about it; I have to say I’m troubled by what I read, but I would have to learn more before I can really comment.”

Further, legislation like this is not on our agenda.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

51 Comments
  1. - Anon - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:05 pm:

    “Shucks, I wanted to be so much like them and everythin’”


  2. - Mokenavince - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:06 pm:

    Indiana passed a bad law, Pence came of as a real mope on TV. Another example of caving into the religious right. It will cost Indiana dearly. I make Illinois look pretty good.


  3. - haverford - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:07 pm:

    First, I don’t actually think Rauner would do something like this. But after all the union/right to work stuff, boy does “this is not on our agenda” mean absolutely nothing.


  4. - Man with a plan - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:09 pm:

    I would never harm the LGBT community. Now the middle class, however…


  5. - chi - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:09 pm:

    I don’t think Rauner would sign legislation like this, but it drives me crazy when politicians sidestep a question on a bill by saying it’s “not on our agenda”. Such weasel words. What if it’s put on your agenda tomorrow- how will you handle it?


  6. - MrJM - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:18 pm:

    tl;dr - Bruce Rauner lacks the moral courage necessary to denounce Indiana’s discrimination law.

    – MrJM


  7. - sal-says - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:19 pm:

    == Further, legislation like this is not on our agenda. ==

    Is this like ‘I don’t hate Unions’?


  8. - chi - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:24 pm:

    “Rauner too scared of Indiana to condemn its legalized discrimination”


  9. - out of touch - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:26 pm:

    “…I would have to learn more before I can really comment”.

    What? What is the missing piece that would tip your decision-making? This is cut and dried. Heck, even Indiana’s OWN Governor is stepping back from it. Not that I would suggest making a habit of following Pence’s lead…


  10. - Wensicia - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:30 pm:

    Rauner: (aside) “Is there a way I can structure a like bill around union members?”


  11. - Fight Fair - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:32 pm:

    Looks like not everyone here realizes Illinois also is in the 20 states with a Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The key paragraphs of the Illinois and Indiana laws are almost identical and patterned on the federal law Bill Clinton signed. See Section 15 of our law, Illinois Compiled Statutes. http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2272&ChapterID=64


  12. - OneMan - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:38 pm:

    Fight Fair…

    It also looks like some quick to echo Pence’s talking point are unware of the significant differences…

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/03/what-makes-indianas-religious-freedom-law-different/388997/

    Some quotes for you…

    First, the Indiana law explicitly allows any for-profit business to assert a right to “the free exercise of religion.” The federal RFRA doesn’t contain such language, and neither does any of the state RFRAs except South Carolina’s; in fact, Louisiana and Pennsylvania, explicitly exclude for-profit businesses from the protection of their RFRAs.

    The new Indiana statute also contains this odd language: “A person whose exercise of religion has been substantially burdened, or is likely to be substantially burdened, by a violation of this chapter may assert the violation or impending violation as a claim or defense in a judicial or administrative proceeding, regardless of whether the state or any other governmental entity is a party to the proceeding.” (My italics.) Neither the federal RFRA, nor 18 of the 19 state statutes cited by the Post, says anything like this; only the Texas RFRA, passed in 1999, contains similar language.

    Part of the reason the New Mexico lawsuit that seems to have sparked this didn’t come under New Mexico’s law is that the state wasn’t a party. Indiana’s law isn’t just about state action like a zoning action, but action by private parties. If this wasn’t driven in part by the New Mexico case then why have the private party stuff in there since only Texas felt the urge to have it?

    But nice try arguing they are the same law.


  13. - Cheswick - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:39 pm:

    == Further, legislation like this is not on our agenda. –

    Also, the governor likes unions.


  14. - chi - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:41 pm:

    =Looks like not everyone here realizes Illinois also is in the 20 states with a Religious Freedom Restoration Act.=

    Someone’s not fighting fair…

    Please read the Tribune article noting how the Religious Freedom Act is balanced with anti-discriminatory law.


  15. - MrJM - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:43 pm:

    “Illinois also is in the 20 states with a Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The key paragraphs of the Illinois and Indiana laws are almost identical and patterned on the federal law Bill Clinton signed.”

    False.

    Of the many important differences in the Indiana bill, the biggest is Section 9. Under that Section 9, a “person” — not only an individual but also any organization, partnership, LLC, corporation, company, firm, church, religious society, other entity, etc — whose “exercise of religion has been substantially burdened, or is likely to be substantially burdened” can use the law as “a claim or defense *** regardless of whether the state or any other governmental entity is a party to the proceeding.”

    Every other Religious Freedom Restoration Act, including Illinois, applies to disputes between a person and a government. Indiana’s is the only law that explicitly applies to disputes between private citizens.

    In addition, Illinois offers the protections of the Illinois Human Rights Act as amended in 2005.

    – MrJM


  16. - Loop Lady - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:45 pm:

    Bruce wants Pence to admire him and wants the businesses IN doesn’t capture…what a guy…


  17. - LogicalFallacyAlert - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:48 pm:

    Fight Fair-Read one of Rich’s earlier posts from today. Illinois, in addition to having a Religious Freedom Restoration Act on the books, bans discrimination based on sexual orientation. Indiana does not. And even if Illinois didn’t have a ban on discrimination against gay people, that would not make Indiana’s law ok. You seem to imply that the Hoosiers’ horrific law is okay because 20 other states have similar legal provisions. Indiana does not protect its gay citizens from discrimination while also upholding religious freedom, and its neighbor to the west does both of those things.


  18. - Honeybear - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:53 pm:

    Further, legislation like this is not on our agenda

    Meaning, we are going to do this, just not now.


  19. - Gooner - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 12:56 pm:

    Of course Rauner will not condemn it.

    If he did, it would hurt his national prospects. While this stuff does not fly in Illinois, it is popular nationally among the GOP base.

    Once again, it seems the Gov. has his eye on the ball. He’s more than happy to alienate Illinois voters if it means making himself more appealing to the base in a White House (or VP run).

    So far, he’s not governing like a guy who thinks he will have to face Illinois voters in three years or so.


  20. - VanillaMan - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:02 pm:

    “I’ve read a bit about it; I have to say I’m troubled by what I read…

    Jibberish


  21. - NewWestSuburbanGop'er - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:02 pm:

    At this point, can we really believe anything the Governor says?

    Oh by the way UNION, UNION, UNION, UNION.


  22. - Arsenal - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:18 pm:

    What the hell does “Key paragraph of the law” mean, anyway? Drafting and passing legislation is so tricky that anything that *isn’t* key to the bill is cut fast.


  23. - Democrat Grrrl - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:19 pm:

    So, about the only thing he likes to talk unequivocably about is when he bashes unions?


  24. - Big Muddy - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:21 pm:

    It doesn’t need to be on the Governors agenda. It’s on Rep. Peter Breen’s. The freshman GOP’er out of Lombard was one of the architects of the Indiana homophobe and bigot restoration act. Religious freedom also includes freedom from religion Rep. Breen.


  25. - Mouthy - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:21 pm:

    Maybe you should ask Rauner what he thinks about this:”even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that is something that God intended to happen.” Might just as well flesh him out on all of Indiana’s religious wacko stuff…


  26. - Anonymous - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:29 pm:

    There is nothing wrong with saying that Religous people do not have to take pictures at a gay wedding or to make a gay wedding cake. There are many people who would do it. I would do both if I had either kind of business of course for personal reasons. If they are not comfortable with my girlfriend and me so be it. I am not comfortable around them. I am also religious just not in the same way.


  27. - Demoralized - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:31 pm:

    Well, that was an excellent non-answer.


  28. - OneMan - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:34 pm:

    Meaning, we are going to do this, just not now.

    No, he isn’t and even if he wanted to there is no way it passes the legislature.


  29. - Archiesmom - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:37 pm:

    It’s not rocket science, Governor. Commit, for once!


  30. - Anonymous - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:37 pm:

    Religous freedom should be upheld.

    You should not have to participate in a gay wedding if you don’t want to based on your beliefs.


  31. - Wordslinger - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:38 pm:

    Way to take a strong and principled stand, governor. Where should we send the “Profiles in Courage” award nomination?

    Does that mean it’s “not a priority?”

    Here in Illinois, the Indiana law that the governor apparently can’t form an opinion on would have as much chance of passing as the Indiana laws that he thinks are the bees-knees.

    That’s a good thing.


  32. - anonin' - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:50 pm:

    “Troubled” Huh….what else does BVR need to know
    Does he have the same readin’ regimen as CaribouBarbie. One of hero/role models goes all whackjob and BVR is “troubled”
    Hey drop a dime on Rocco and see if you can get filled in before the 6 p.m. news shows


  33. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:51 pm:

    ==- Anonymous - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:37 pm:==

    No one is being “forced” to participate in a gay wedding. That’s a nonsense red herring.


  34. - OneMan - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 1:54 pm:

    Religous freedom should be upheld.

    You should not have to participate in a gay wedding if you don’t want to based on your beliefs.

    So where is that line, should you be able to deny service to anyone who believes differently than you do? Should a ELCA Lutheran be able to deny service to an LCMS Lutheran because of differences?

    Should a waiter be allowed to refuse service to a couple because they knew the couple (lets make them straight for argument sake) engaged in relations outside of marriage?

    Should a mattress store be able to deny selling someone a bed because one of them was divorced for a non “acceptable” reason?

    Should the local Halal or Kosher butcher refuse to sell me meat?

    Just curious where that line is for you?

    So do you think Newman vs Piggie Park Enterprises was wrong?

    https://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/390/400/case.html


  35. - Archiesmom - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 2:15 pm:

    Religous freedom should be upheld.

    You should not have to participate in a gay wedding if you don’t want to based on your beliefs.

    ******

    Substitute “interracial” for “gay” and see how that works for you. And don’t say that has nothing to do with religion, because 25+ years ago it certainly did.


  36. - anonin' - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 2:31 pm:

    “So where is that line, should you be able to deny service to anyone who believes differently than you do? Should a ELCA Lutheran be able to deny service to an LCMS Lutheran because of differences?”
    If drawing a line is real important to ya…how about when ACA forces nuns to take pill…or maybe requires the straight baker to eat the cake with 2 grooms on top. Otherwise the whackjobs are saving themselves and their religion from a demon that doesn’t exist.
    In the meantime lets cancel the Final Four in Indy
    Maybe Rahm aand BVR can offer the United Center FOR Free.


  37. - Michelle Flaherty - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 2:42 pm:

    Gov Rauner needs to learn from his Indiana counterparts.
    Our neighbor is down.
    It’s time to start kicking our neighbor.
    It’s the Indiana way.


  38. - Buzzie - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 2:44 pm:

    Indiana legislature should mandate an in-session dress code—white robes and hoods.


  39. - Rich Miller - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 2:49 pm:

    Buzzie, I think that was the actual dress code 90 years ago or so when the KKK controlled both Indiana chambers and the governor’s office.


  40. - Rich Miller - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 2:51 pm:

    ===You should not have to participate in a gay wedding===

    You should not have to participate in a gay wedding’s consummation.

    Fixed it for you.

    But if you’re offering a service to the public, you cannot legally discriminate.


  41. - Bunson8r - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 2:54 pm:

    OneMan

    I think it is also important to point out there is an exemption from the Texas law when civil rights are at issue. So if (and when, hopefully) LGBT is afforded a protected class by Congress (unlikely) or the Supreme Court (maybe), Texas’ law will not apply to any actions targeting LGBT. Indiana’s law is written so discrimination by private parties is specifically allowed and I have a hard time seeing a way around this.

    Also, while I think in the abstract that state cannibalism is terrible for the nation as a whole (and an awesome way for corporations to shift the tax burden to people who aren’t lucky enough to be a corporation), I see this is a just way to punish Indiana for being so disgustingly regressive.


  42. - Bunson8r - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 3:02 pm:

    Also, after reading all of the comments, I just want to point out how terribly disheartening comment sections are on issues like this. The lowest of the lowest common denominator can’t wait to come out and spew their ignorance and thinly-veiled bigotry based on some perverted interpretation of their religion.

    —Religous freedom should be upheld.

    You should not have to participate in a gay wedding if you don’t want to based on your beliefs. —

    Religious freedom? 80+% of Indiana is Christian. They are trying to force their bigoted distortion of Christianity onto everyone. That is the OPPOSITE of religious freedom.

    These things trouble me so much, I think people who think that way should be forced to exclusively service gay couples until they realize that they are just normal people God made a little different than them.


  43. - Anonymous - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 3:16 pm:

    Ooh, I love to dance the little sidestep / Now they see me, now they don’t / I’ve come and gone / And ooh, I love to sweep around a wide step / Cut a little swath / And lead the people on!


  44. - zatoichi - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 3:17 pm:

    Won’t eat cake with two grooms on? Please. Is it good cake? Pass that plate. My gay friends spend some serious coin for social events with great food. If some company does not want that action, their loss. Once the cake leaves the baker’s shop, it is no longer the baker’s issue. It’s just cake.


  45. - Anon. - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 3:18 pm:

    ==In addition, Illinois offers the protections of the Illinois Human Rights Act as amended in 2005.==

    Maybe, but a couple of thoughts. First, the HRA by its terms doesn’t even apply to most businesses in discriminating against customers. it applies only to “employment, real estate transactions, access to financial credit, and the availability of public accommodations.” It doesn’t apply to bakers who don’t want to make cakes for a same-sex, interracial or mixed-faith marriage.

    Second, even the HRA is subject to the Illinois RFRA, which applies even to laws of “general applicablity” such as the HRA.

    Third, when you get right down to it, it isn’t the new Indiana RFRA that is the problem, it’s the lack of a law prohibiting discrimination against individuals based on sexual preference. Unless you have a right under some law to nondiscriminatory treatment by me, I don’t need an RFRA to defend my discrimination against you.

    It may be make us feel moral to pile on the barbarians in Indiana, but we could use a little house cleaning here in Illinois, too.


  46. - Gooner - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 3:22 pm:

    Maybe Rauner will hire a #250,000 a year consultant to advise him on these issues.

    That seems to be his preferred option when confused.


  47. - OneMan - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 4:00 pm:

    If drawing a line is real important to ya…how about when ACA forces nuns to take pill…or maybe requires the straight baker to eat the cake with 2 grooms on top. Otherwise the whackjobs are saving themselves and their religion from a demon that doesn’t exist.

    Wow… Where to start with this…

    If drawing a line is real important to ya…how about when ACA forces nuns to take pill

    Well, last time I checked the ACA doesn’t force anyone to take any medication, be they nuns or not. If your argument is that the ACA might force some entity to make birth control part of their medical plan then the courts have kind of ruled about that.

    Also one would argue that the nun’s are part of and work for a religious organization. Big difference legally than working for a bakery.

    But channel that anger, that’s good…

    maybe requires the straight baker to eat the cake with 2 grooms on top.

    Well I for one would be in favor of any law or action that would require me to eat cake.

    But really, if you think that people who offer services to the public as private companies should be able to deny someone those services due to their personal beliefs, where is the limit on this?

    Because if your argument is you should be able to deny services (again, this isn’t make a church do something) then you are arguing that the court was wrong in

    https://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/390/400/case.html

    The thing I don’t get is if you feel a private business should be able to deny services to someone because of a personal exception. That is provide a service to one group of people an not another due to a belief, how selective can that belief be.

    If you don’t want to bake a cake for a wedding because it involves 2 dudes, then get out of the wedding cake business entirely.

    As a follow up should a gas station be able to refuse to sell someone gas because the people in the car either do or believe something that goes against the gas station owners belief?

    This argument for private commerce or transactions between two private parties is silly on it’s face.


  48. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 5:34 pm:

    I wish the Governor decided to pick a side.

    By really not picking a side, Rauner reminds me the social agenda can be changed by how Rauner sees the winds blowing versus how it might ruin his stature with the Right, when he’s appeasing.


  49. - wendy - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 5:40 pm:

    Anon @3:18,

    “The HRA by its terms doesn’t even apply to most businesses in discriminating against customers. It applies only to “employment, real estate transactions, access to financial credit, and the availability of public accommodations.” It doesn’t apply to bakers who don’t want to make cakes for a same-sex, interracial or mixed-faith marriage. ”

    This is not correct. The Illinois HRA specifically includes “restaurant” and “bakery” in a long list of public accommodations. A very, very long list.

    Oh: and you left out education.

    As for how the Illinois Religious Freedom Act interacts with the HRA: that is an issue for the courts, based on statutory language and legislative intent. I think they might find that the legislative intent was, as OneMan said earlier, “to write a law that prevents a city from using zoning to jerk over a church and doesn’t allow you to use G-d as an excuse to be a jerk.”


  50. - ArchPundit - Monday, Mar 30, 15 @ 7:32 pm:

    ===d the availability of public accommodations.” It doesn’t apply to bakers who don’t want to make cakes for a same-sex, interracial or mixed-faith marriage.

    Wendy has this covered in the short version, but I’m happy to post the text in comments again if need be. Public accommodations are considered to be pretty much any service available to the general public.


  51. - Black Ivy - Tuesday, Mar 31, 15 @ 7:45 am:

    I believe Governor Rauner is troubled by the misinformation campaign that the uninformed media has launched to belittle, demean, and essentially de-legitimize Governor Pence from running for President. The print media has been wrong on this law. A dereliction of duty in my book.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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