Group of lawmakers lobby to repeal controversial House Bill 1523 - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Group of lawmakers lobby to repeal controversial House Bill 1523

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Travel bans, canceled concerts and boycotting businesses are all part of the backlash against Mississippi's Religious Accommodations Act.

The Governor signed the bill a week ago. But it was all Democrats at Tuesday's press conference. 

"I want to have a chance her progress bill so that we do not become what our neighbors and strangers perceive us to be," described Representative Jay Hughes-D.

Hughes said House Bill 1523 is bad for business. It won't take effect till July 1. And he, along with others, want to undo it before then.

"We had the opportunity of all Southern states to move forward with rapid pace but Mississippi is probably going to be in a mess because of this," added Representative Steve Holland-D.

Hughes argued pastors can already dictate what happens within the walls of their church. He noted the first amendment already provides the needed protections.

"So reality is that this is a drastic solution to a problem that doesn't exist," described Hughes.

Yet, Representative Andy Gipson is standing firm in his position that it is needed.

"I don't think his bills going to be reconsidered now or in the future," said Gipson. "I think this is in line with what a number of states already passed."

Gipson cited the National Conference of State Legislatures. Its documents show about 20 states that have some form of religious accommodations law pending or on the books.

"Why are they picking on Mississippi?" asked Gipson. "Why are they attacking North Carolina, for example? When many of these laws have been on the books and other states but had same-sex marriage before the Supreme Court decision last year."

If there isn't a repeal, the law takes effect July first. The resolution was filed Tuesday but it will require the deadline rules be suspended before it's ever brought up for a vote.

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