After the Missouri Senate passed on Wednesday a religious freedom measure seen to enable anti-LGBT discrimination despite a 39-hour filibuster from Democrats, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the resolution sounds “inconsistent” with fairness and other values.
Earnest made the comments in response to a question from the Washington Blade on whether President Obama would declare support for the filibuster and opposition to the measure just as Hillary Clinton and Bernard Sanders did via Twitter on Tuesday night.
The White House spokesperson said he hasn’t seen the details of the measure, Senate Joint Resolution 39, but based on the way the Blade described it said, “it certainly sounds as if that particular bill would be inconsistent with the values of justice and fairness and equality that this administration has long pursued.”
“And again, if we have more specific response to the actual bill, I’ll let you know, but the president is quite proud of how over the last seven years we sought to advance equality in this country, and it’d be a shame if a bill like the one that you described were to deal that a setback,” Earnest added.
The resolution pending before the Missouri Legislature would allow religious organizations and individuals to deny services to same-sex couples out of religious objections. If the Missouri House follows suit in approving the measure, it’ll head to the ballot for voters to ratify on Election Day as a state constitutional amendment.
A native of Kansas City, Mo., Earnest indicated he wouldn’t be happy if his home state enacted a measure that would allow anti-LGBT discrimination in the name of religious freedom.
“It certainly would not be the first thing that I would be bragging about if that were something that my home state were to choose to do,” Earnest said.