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Arkansas governor pressured to veto religious freedom law

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Posted at 11:59 PM, Mar 31, 2015
and last updated 2015-04-01 00:21:36-04

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Walmart’s CEO is standing up against a religious freedom law that just landed on the governor’s desk in Arkansas, home to the company’s headquarters.

It’s similar to the law Indiana adopted last week, which sparked outrage from those who say it opens the door for discrimination against gays and lesbians.

Walmart CEO Doug McMillon asked Gov. Asa Hutchinson to veto the bill, which was approved by the Arkansas House on Tuesday.

The company is headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas.

“Today’s passage of HB1228 threatens to undermine the spirit of inclusion present throughout the state of Arkansas and does not reflect the values we proudly uphold,” McMillon said in a statement.

It’s not the only other state currently considering a religious freedom law. There are 14 other states looking at similar proposals this year, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

A number of big companies have spoken out against the Indiana law, including Starbucks, Apple, Angie’s List, Yelp, Salesforce, and Eli Lilly. NASCAR, as well as the NCAA, NBA, WNBA, Indiana Pacers and Indiana Fever have also expressed disappointment. And Connecticut banned all state-funded travel to Indiana over the law.

On Tuesday, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence pledged to “fix” the controversial law to clarify that it does not allow discrimination against gays and lesbians.