State Sen. Trent Garner told the AP that he will not attempt to override Gov. Hutchinson‘s veto of his bill that would have criminalized some forms of protest.
Garner’s bill would have made “unlawful mass picketing” a Class A misdemeanor, with penalties of up to a year in jail and a fine of $2,500. Picketing was defined so broadly that it was hard to see the bill as anything other than an assault on the First Amendment, part of a national trend of Republican lawmakers attempting to tamp down political demonstrations and protests in the wake of the election of Donald Trump.
The governor vetoed the bill earlier this month, calling it “overbroad, vague and will have the effect of restricting free speech and the right to assemble.”