ATLANTA - A small group of faith leaders praised Governor Nathan Deal's recent comments on controversial religious freedom legislation.
"He spoke about how it's important that we protect fundamental religious beliefs, but we don't have to discriminate against people to do that," said Rabbi Joshua Heller of Congregation B'nai Torah.
Governor Deal made those remarks last week and urged lawmakers to strike a compromise on the issue.
"I think we can work something out," said Dave Baker, executive director of the Faith and Freedom Coalition of Georgia.
Baker supports House Bill 757 because he believes it will protect people of faith from having to violate their beliefs for fear of state intervention.
"One side does not have a monopoly on the word discrimination," Baker explained. "You hear it and it sounds like a bad thing, and it is a bad thing, and no one wants to discriminate, and this is making sure that everyone can exercise their conscience."
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 21 states have some type of religious freedom law on the books, including Alabama, Tennessee and South Carolina.
"We're trying to fill a hole here and make sure that Georgians have the same protections that citizens of other states have," said Baker.
State lawmakers said Tuesday they continue to work to find common ground before the legislative session ends March 24.