On Wednesday, the Republican governor of Arkansas, Asa Hutchinson, refused to sign the religious freedom act, mainly citing his own son’s objection to the bill but, also, wishing to avoid the chaos that a similar bill in Illinois caused.
“I ask that changes be made in the legislation, and I’ve asked that the leaders in the General Assembly recall the bill so that it can be amended,” the Republican governor said, so it more precisely mirrors the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1993.
“In the alternative,” he said, “it can simply have some language changes so that those accommodations and changes can be made.”
Hutchinson had previously said he would sign the bill into law. [..]
In a sign of what he called the generational gap, the Republican governor said his son told him he could tell the press that he signed a petition asking him to veto the bill.
While the media, companies, like Walmart, and politicians, like Hillary Clinton praised Gov. Hutchinson for his courage, they have all overlooked one very important fact, that was pointed out by Karoli at Crooks and Liars:
Gov. Hutchinson didn’t veto the bill. He sent it back unsigned to the legislature. As per the Arkansas Constitution, the bill will become law in five days.
So they can dither for five days, the bill becomes law and Asa walks away with his hands clean blaming the state legislators for failing to “fix” the bill.
Cowardice of the first order.