TEXAS: Gov. Greg Abbott Issues "Religious Liberty" Directive To Protect Anti-Gay State Staffers From "Adverse Action"
Talking Points Memo:
Following the ruling, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) issued a directive on Friday ordering state agencies to "prioritize compliance" with the First Amendment and Texas Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The directive states that agencies should make sure that nobody "takes any adverse action against" people "substantially motivated by sincere religious belief."Marriage licenses are being issued in many Texas counties.
"The law protects religious liberty not only in houses of worship—but also in schools, in businesses, in the military, in public forums, and in the town square. These protections are afforded to all people, of all faiths," Abbott wrote in the directive. "Yet in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision, the law’s promise of religious liberty will be tested by some who seek to silence and marginalize those whose conscience will not allow them to participate in or endorse marriages that are incompatible with their religious beliefs."
In a statement blasting the Supreme Court's decision earlier on Friday, Abbott said that he would take direct action to protect the religious liberties of Texas residents. "As I have done in the past, I will continue to defend the religious liberties of all Texans—including those whose conscience dictates that marriage is only the union of one man and one woman. Later today, I will be issuing a directive to state agencies instructing them to prioritize the protection of Texans’ religious liberties," he said in a statement.
Read the full directive.