3/5/2014 9:37:00 AM Editorial Brewer's veto of SB1062 was best for Arizona and its residents
Our governor has spoken: She could not find one instance in Arizona for which state Senate Bill 1062 was necessary.
Gov. Jan Brewer this past Wednesday, Feb. 26, vetoed a bill that less than one week prior set off a national debate over gay rights, religion and discrimination. The Republican-backed legislation subjected Arizona to blistering criticism from major corporations, political leaders from both parties, and even Major League Baseball and beyond.
"My agenda is to sign into law legislation that advances Arizona," Brewer said. "I call them like I seem them, despite the tears or the boos from the crowd."
Thankfully, like she has in the past, Brewer gave the legislation careful deliberation, she said, by talking to her lawyers, citizens and lawmakers on both sides of the debate.
Brewer said the bill "could divide Arizona in ways we could not even imagine and no one would ever want." She added that the bill was broadly worded and could result in unintended negative consequences, such as lawsuits or misinterpretation.
The bill was designed to give added protection from lawsuits to people who assert their religious beliefs in refusing service to gays. Opponents called it an open attack on gays that invited discrimination.
We like to believe this is a case of our governor doing the right thing, rather than making a decision for political gain.
While intentions behind the bill were for the benefit of the state, we're told, even Sen. Steve Pierce, R-Prescott, lamented his approval of the bill just days later.
"I don't like the negative picture of Arizona, and I'm on board asking the governor to veto the bill," Pierce said.
With the negative light that the bill placed Arizona in, this bill was ill-conceived and, like Brewer hinted, not vetted enough.