George Stephanopolous’s grilling of Indiana governor Mike Pence was masterful

According to Indiana governor Mike Pence, the “religious freedom” bill that he signed into law is the victim of a huge “misunderstanding” perpetuated by the left and the mainstream media.

Appearing on ABC News with George Stephanopolous in an attempt to “clarify” the bill, Pence did everything but, constantly dodging the ABC host’s attempts to answer if the bill is about denying services to LGBT people.

“I understand that there’s been a tremendous amount of misinformation and misunderstanding around this bill, and I’m just determined — and I appreciate the time on your program — I’m just determined to clarify this,” Pence said.

“So this is a yes or no question,” the Stephanopolous started out. “Is Advance America right when they say a florist in Indiana can now refuse to serve a gay couple without fear of punishment?”

For almost the entire 11 minutes of the interview, Pence tried every which way to avoid answering that question directly, with the ABC host relentlessly pressing.

“This is where this debate has gone, with misinformation,” Pence deflected. “There’s been shameless rhetoric about my state and about this law and about its intention all over the Internet. People are trying to make it about one particular issue. And now you’re doing that, as well.”

“That was one of your supporters who was talking about the bill right there,” Stephanopolous pressed. “It said it would protect a Christian florist who — against any kind of punishment. Is that true or not?”

“George, look, the issue here is, you know, is tolerance a two way street or not?” Pence said. “I mean, you know, there’s a lot of talk about tolerance in this country today having to do with people on the left. But here Indiana, steps forward to protect the constitutional rights and privileges of freedom of religion for people of faith and families of faith in our state and this avalanche of intolerance that’s been poured on our state is just outrageous.”

“So when you say tolerance is a two way street, does that mean that Christians who want to refuse service or people of any other faith who want to refuse service to gays and lesbians, that it’s now legal in the state of Indiana?” the ABC host asked again.

“I’m telling you, George, it is a red herring and I think it’s deeply troubling to millions of Americans and, frankly, people all across the state of Indiana who feel troubled about government overreach,” Pence deflected once more.

Watch the entire below, via ABC’s This Week:

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Sky Palma

Before launching DeadState back in 2012, Sky Palma has been blogging about politics, social issues and religion for over a decade. He lives in Los Angeles and also enjoys Brazilian jiu jitsu, chess, music and art.

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