Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson has joined
the chorus of business leaders speaking out against a rash of
so-called religious freedom bills.
Lawmakers in roughly a dozen states are
considering adopting a version of the federal law approved by
Congress in 1993. The bills differ, however, by expanding the
definition of a person to include companies and associations.
Opponents argue that the bills would open the door to discrimination
against gay men and lesbian based on religious beliefs.
On Tuesday, Republican Indiana Governor
Mike Pence called for a
“fix” to a bill he signed last week, two days after he
appeared on ABC's This Week to defend the legislation. And
the Arkansas House approved similar legislation, prompting
Arkansas-based Walmart, the world's largest retailer, to call for
Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson to veto the bill.
asks Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson to veto anti-gay bill.)
“The legislation in Indiana, and
there are some bills being considered in other states, is not just
pure idiocy from a business perspective, and it is that,” Sorenson
said. “The notion that you can tell businesses that they are
somehow free to discriminate against people based on who they are is
Apple CEO Tim
Cook and Salesforce CEO Marc
Benioff have also criticized such laws.