Virginia governor vetoes ‘religious exemption’ bill

“While we are happy that SB 41 will not become law, the General Assembly’s votes against fairness and non-discrimination make it clear that our work is far from over,” said Parrish. “The majority of Virginians believe in fairness and equality, and it is discouraging to see so many of our legislators unwilling to stand with them for what is right by passing discriminatory legislation.”

You can read more about the other LGBTQ bills which passed through the 2016 General Assembly and either failed or were killed here.

McAuliffe went on to stress his belief that equality is “good for business,” saying this legislation would have created roadblocks “as we try to build the new Virginia economy.”

“Businesses and job creators do not want to locate or do business in states that appear more concerned with demonizing people than with creating a strong business climate,” he said. “Legislation that immunizes the discriminatory actions of certain people and institutions at the expense of same-sex couples would damage Virginia’s reputation for commonsense, pro-business government. We need only look at the damage these types of laws are doing in other states to understand the harm this bill could bring to our Commonwealth and its economy.”

This marks the end of any relevant LGBTQ-specific legislation for the 2016 session. Nothing changed, for better or worse, with protections for LGBTQs and steps to discriminate or stigmatize the same group either failing in committees or in full floor votes. SB41 was the only bill to require a veto by the Governor.

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