Mississippi business organizations and the state’s major employers ultimately did not have influence sufficient to dissuade Gov. Phil Bryant from signing House Bill 1523, legislation the governor says protects religious freedoms but opponents say legalizes discrimination against gay people and others.

Putting aside protests from business groups and businesses across the state, Bryant Tuesday morning gave his official blessing to the bill and proclaimed it a necessary step to ensure religious liberty is maintained. The law, which goes into effect July 1, allows circuit court clerks, faith-based organizations and businesses to refuse service to gay people and others.



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