Ohio Gov. John Kasich said during a recent presidential primary interview he wouldn’t have signed off on a bill akin to the one in North Carolina restricting transgenders to using the bathroom facilities that correspond to their genders of birth, not choice.
When asked directly by CBS “Face the Nation” host John Dickerson if he would have signed such a bill had it been brought before him in Ohio, Kasich said, “probably not,” the Washington Blade reported. Later in the interview he doubled down on that claim, saying he definitely wouldn’t have signed it.
“We are not having this issue in our state about this whole religious liberty,” Kasich said. “I believe that religious institutions have to be protected and be able to be in a position of where they can live out their deeply held religious purposes, but when you get beyond that, it gets to be a tricky issue. And tricky is not the right word, but it can become a contentious issue. But in our state, we’re not facing this.”
Kasich also said “everybody needs to take a deep breath” and respect others.
“The minute we try to start trying to write laws, things become more polarized, they become more complicated,” he said. “Obviously, I don’t want to force people to violate their deeply held religious convictions, but we’d have to see what that’s all about.”
And from what he knows about North Carolina’s law so far, Kasich said he “wouldn’t have signed it” out of concerns about LGBT discrimination.
“You just have to see what the laws are, and what the proposals are, and why you need to write a law,” Kasich said, the Washington Blade reported. “Why do we have to write a law every time we turn around in this country? Can’t we figure out just how to get along a little bit better and respect one another? I mean, that’s where I think we ought to be. Everybody, chill out, get over it if you have a disagreement with somebody. There’s where I am right now … and unless there’s something that pops up, I’m not inclined to sign anything.”
How did America get from “Mayberry” to “gay marriage?” Here’s the explanation, in “A Queer Thing Happened to America: And What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been.”
His remarks come as North Carolina has faced fire from around the nation for a bill signed into effect by Gov. Pat McCrory that bans community governments from putting in place regulations that allow transgenders to use whichever public bathroom facility they most identify with, in terms of gender. Groups, particularly from the business sector, have called on the state to repeal the measure.
But just as many groups are applauding the governor’s signature.
The Christian Action League, Return America and other organizations with conservative slants have scheduled a noon rally at the Capitol building in Raleigh to show solidarity with McCrory.
Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action Leagues, said in a written statement: “The bill that passed and the one the governor signed, HB 2, overturned an egregious Charlotte ordinance and restored basic expectations of privacy people have when using the restroom. The bill also provides that private businesses can make their own decisions regarding accommodations and services and not be forced by a city ordinance to do certain things that could be detrimental to their business. It’s unfortunate this common sense measure has been so grossly misrepresented and maligned. The rally will seek to provide clarity, as well as cheer our state’s governor and lawmakers on.”