Religious conservatives lobby for ‘religious freedom’ law

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — Religious conservatives are lobbying North Carolina lawmakers to pass legislation that supporters say protects expressions of faith but that opponents contend would legalize discrimination against gays and lesbians.

Advocates of the type of “religious freedom” law that made news recently in Indiana and Arkansas visit the General Assembly on Tuesday. Their first stop is a meeting with a supporter, Lt. Gov. Dan Forest.

Forest and the Catholic bishops of the Raleigh and Charlotte dioceses have signed a letter urging passage after the leader of the state House said the bill wouldn’t move this session.

While the Senate still could consider the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, passage becomes more difficult after this week’s self-imposed legislative deadline.

IBM and American Airlines executives oppose the legislation.

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