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Wednesday, February 26, 2014, 05:07 pm PT (08:07 pm ET)

Arizona governor vetoes gay discrimination bill Apple rallied against

Arizona Governor Governor Jan Brewer on Wednesday vetoed a controversial bill that would have, in effect, legalized wide-ranging discrimination of homosexuals as an extension of religious freedom. Apple, along with a number of other major U.S. corporations, banded together to have the bill shot down.

Brewer

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoes bill SB1062. | Source: Jan Brewer via Twitter


In a tweet on Wednesday, Gov. Brewer confirmed that she had officially vetoed bill SB1062, which proposed to grant Arizona business owners the right to turn away gay and lesbian customers on religious grounds.

The measure, sponsored by Republican State Sens. Steve Yarbrough, Nancy Barto and Bob Worsley, landed on the governor's desk last week after being approved by a Republican-led state legislature, reports CNN.

On Monday, Apple requested governor Brewer veto the bill. As noted previously, Apple's ask carried clout considering the company invested millions of dollars in an Arizona-based sapphire production facility to be run in partnership with GT Advanced Technology.




Supposedly devised to protect religious freedom and non-government business entities, the bill proposed a revision to the definitions of "exercise of religion" and "person." The following key provision was of special concern to rights activists:
Expands the definition of person to include any individual, association, partnership, corporation, church, or other business entity.

The legislation lost its legs soon after the public caught wind of the bill's potential to institutionalize discrimination. Supporters of a veto included Arizona Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake, while major businesses and corporations like American Airlines and Marriott also stood against SB1062.