Divided Arizona House overhauls religious freedom bill - East Valley Tribune: Arizona

Divided Arizona House overhauls religious freedom bill

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Posted: Saturday, May 4, 2013 2:12 pm

The Arizona House of Representatives has tempered a divisive bill that would expand the state's religious freedom law.

Senate Bill 1178 had drawn opposition from civil liberties groups and Democratic lawmakers.

The GOP-led House amended the bill Thursday to remove some of its most controversial provisions, including an effort to allow people to sue governments over attacks on religious freedoms, regardless if the government was involved in the claim.

Arizona law and the U.S. Constitution already protect religious freedom, but proponents of the measure say stricter language is needed.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona had complained that the original version of the bill would have allowed people to break any law by claiming religious freedoms.

The conservative Center for Arizona Policy advocated for the measure.

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