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Fallout over ‘religious freedom’ law hits business community

Indiana state lawmakers are facing growing pressure after the state’s controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act was signed by Gov. Mike Pence last week, prompting some of the nation’s top companies to take direct aim at the state’s economy.

On Monday’s Rundown, CNBC’s Mary Thompson reported that the reaction has been “relentlessly negative” for the business community, on both a local level and a national one. 

The nation’s largest companies, including Paypal and the NCAAhave spoken out against the RFRA, with business-review site Angie’s List going as far as to put a hold on an expansion plan that would add 1,000 jobs to the state by 2016. 

Most notably, Apple CEO Tim Cook, who is openly gay, said that corporate America decided long ago that discrimination was “bad for business.” 

On a local level, Thompson reports, many store owners throughout Indiana have placed signs in their windows to ensure customers they do not discriminate in order to prevent a loss in business. “To some this is a source of frustration, because they feel they shouldn’t even have to hang these signs at all in order to make their customers feel comfortable,” Thompson said.

Republican leaders responded directly to national opposition that claims the law discriminates against the LGBT community Monday as they attempt to clarify the law, with Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma calling it a “misconception” that the law “allows the denial of services to any Hoosier.”

But Democrats are standing firm, saying that there is only one solution to the problem resulting from the Republican-crafted legislation. “If Republicans want a fix, there is only one choice: and that is repeal this law,” State Sen. Tim Lanane said in a press conference on Monday.

Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma will join The Rundown on Tuesday, March 31. Tune into msnbc at 9 a.m. ET/6 a.m. PT.

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Fallout over 'religious freedom' law hits business community