Thursday, March 28, 2013

Kentucky Legislature Overrides Veto of Religious Freedom Bill

The Kentucky General Assembly voted Tuesday to override Gov. Steve Beshear's veto of HB 279 (see prior posting), a religious freedom bill that many found vague in its coverage. According to the Lexington Herald-Leader, the vote to override was 79-15 in the Democratic-controlled House, and 32-6 in the Republican controlled Senate. The bill, which is more protective of religious freedom than the analogous federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, was introduced in response to a Kentucky Supreme Court ruling last year upholding a state law requiring the Amish to display bright orange safety triangles on their buggies. (See prior posting.)  However opponents of the bill say it might allow individuals to invoke their religious beliefs to ignore local ordinances that bar discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. [Thanks to Blog from the Capital for the lead.]