It was because of his son that he didn't sign this bill.
Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson surprised many on Wednesday when he announced that he would not sign his state's religious freedom bill.
[ Related: Indiana Passes Religious Freedom Bill Allows Businesses Discriminate Against LGBT ]
The Republican Governor asked for lawmakers to change the current version of the bill so that it mirrors the federal version of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act — which does NOT have the provision that allows businesses to discriminate against customers of different sexual and religious orientations.
Governor Hutchinson faced criticism from a lot of sources when it was announced that he would sign the bill into law, but ultimately it was his son Seth's criticism that had the biggest impact. Hutchinson said:
"My son, Seth, signed the petition asking me, dad, the governor, to veto this bill. And it shows that there's a generational difference of opinion on these issues."
See the video (above) to see his moving press conference!
His son Seth later released his own statement, saying:
"I'm proud to have made a small contribution to the overall effort to stop discrimination against the LGBT community in Arkansas, the state that I love (Go hogs!) I love and respect my father very much, but sometimes we have political disagreements, just as many families do. Most importantly, I hope that the groundswell of grassroots opposition to HB 1228 and other similar discriminatory bills around the country will energize more Americans and help create a long-lasting drive for change in this country, on many issues."
It wasn't just his son who urged Governor Hutchinson to veto the bill; Hillary Clinton tweeted:
Even Wal-mart urged for a veto with a statement that said:
"Every day, in our stores, we see firsthand the benefits of diversity and inclusion have on our associates, customers and communities we serve. It all starts with our core basic belief of respect for the individual. Today's passage of HB1228 threatens to undermine the spirit of inclusion present throughout the state of Arkansas and does not reflect the values we proudly uphold. For these reasons, we are asking Governor Hutchinson to veto this legislation."
We're glad to see that Governor Hutchinson has reversed course and has NOT signed the bill, and we hope Arkansas lawmakers heed his call and make the necessary changes to this bill that WON'T allow businesses to discriminate against the LGBT community.
Maybe they will even set a good example that Indiana can use to change their own controversial bill.
Tags: arkansas, asa hutchinson, bill, changes, family, freedom, gay gay gay, governor, hillary clinton, law, legal matters, little rock, politik, religious, rfra