Back in August, the city council of Fayetteville, Arkansas voted 6-2 to approve a sweeping LGBT rights ordinance after a live-streamed ten-hour public debate that was hotly followed into the wee hours of the morning by many of you here. Four weeks later local haters had gathered enough petition signatures to force the issue onto a referendum that will be held next month.
Today the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce unanimously adopted a resolution calling for citizens to vote in favor of the repeal:
The Chamber will encourage its members and the public to “Vote for Repeal of Ordinance 5703 Chapter 119” on December 9, 2014 the date of the special referendum election on this ordinance. The Chamber submits to voters that it is never good public policy for any governmental entity to adopt rules, regulations, ordinances or laws that are vague, incomplete, fail to include critical definitions for prohibited acts or conduct that may be later be adjudged as criminal; base criminal prosecution on the basis of another’s “perception” of conduct, verbal or non verbal communication or attitude or that have not been completely and thoroughly debated and reviewed.
Here’s the kicker:
Steve Clark, the former Arkansas attorney general driven from elective politics by his conviction for expense account fraud, is president of the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce. His son-in-law, Juston Tennant, was one of two Fayetteville council members who opposed the non-discrimination ordinance. Tennant is expected to run for mayor in two years against Lioneld Jordan, a backer of the ordinance.
You may recall that before the vote took place, Mayor Lionel Jordan delivered a brilliant and impassioned speech in support of the ordinance.