Angie’s List Halts Indiana HQ Expansion in Response to Religious Tyranny Act

The once great state of Indiana is becoming a fly-over state, as freedom-loving Americans flee Hoosier theocracy for saner climes. We have already seen the reactions of the NCAA, GenCon, The Disciples of Christ, and Salesforce. Yelp and Eli Lilly have also expressed disappointment in the law.

We can now add to the list Angie’s List – you may have seen their commercials.

They are a word-of-mouth business rating network. And this one is going to cost Indiana more than just hurt feelings. It is going to cost Hoosiers some money – and about 1,000 jobs.

Apparently, word-of-mouth is that Indiana is not the place to be. So in the spirit of the free marketplace so touted by Republicans, Angie’s List has announced that they’re going to delay going forward with a $40 million expansion to their Indiana headquarters.


Of course, the egregiously misnamed Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) is touted as a protection for businesses, but this is one business that is not amused.

This is what co-founder and Chief Executive Bill Oesterle had to say:

“We are putting the ‘Ford Building Project’ on hold until we fully understand the implications of the Freedom Restoration Act on our employees, both current and future. Angie’s List is open to all and discriminates against none and we are hugely disappointed in what this bill represents.”

And what timing. Turning the old Ford assembly plant into a new office space was to have had its groundbreaking in a few days.
Ironically, Oesterle, a Republican supported Pence for governor.

On Saturday he had this to say:

Look, I’m very proud to be a Republican. I’m concerned about the direction that the legislature and governor have chosen to go here. … I’m concerned that very valid input around this type of legislation is not being heard in the Statehouse.

Of course it’s not being heard. Did you hear the one about the Republican Congresswoman who asked her constituents to post their “Obamacare horror stories” on Facebook and was swamped with success stories praising the president’s healthcare law instead? Did she change her mind about the law? Her answer: because she got only success stories, she used recycled stories from a GOP website to denounce Obamacare anyway.

They don’t want to hear the truth. Until Oesterle and other Republicans realize the full extent of the problem, it is going to continue to be a problem, and the people of states like Indiana are going to suffer for it. Pence’s corporate owners will fly him to basketball games, an option not open to most Hoosiers.

Oesterle seems to understand the source of the hate, at least, pointing to a photograph of Pence signing the RFRA into law:

That photograph told me everything I needed to know. I’ve been on the other side of this issue with them for a long time, going back to the governor’s (Daniels’) campaign. That’s when I first became exposed to those people. The most prominent three figures standing directly behind the governor were those three individuals.

He was speaking of Micah Clark of the homophobic and anti-Semitic American Family Association of Indiana (see some of his hateful quotes at GLAAD), Eric Miller of the ironically-named Advance America (whom NUVO calls the “most powerful man in the Indiana statehouse”), and Curt Smith of the Indiana Family Institute (see some of his hateful quotes at GLAAD) – all vocal supporters of religious tyranny and discrimination in the state of Indiana.

Maybe we should thank Pence for pulling these people out of the shadows in a way we can only dream of doing here. By all means, let’s have some more photo ops. As many of us have observed, the GOP is a gift that keeps on giving. It’s a pity the mainstream media refuses to receive.

The worst of it is – and I know this as a fact because I have family there – Republican Hoosiers will blame Obama for their economic woes, not the fact that they live in a Red State. They haven’t, and they steadfastly refuse, to learn a thing.

Even as the denunciations continue:

You may have noticed on Friday that Apple CEO Tim Cook, of the company that the phones that many of those Hoosier Republican bigots no doubt use – and who also just happens to be gay – has also come out against the law, tweeting,

On Saturday, there came a joint statement from the NBA, WNBA, and the Indiana Pacers and Indiana Fever joining the NCAA in denouncing the RFRA:

The game of basketball is grounded in long established principles of inclusion and mutual respect. We will continue to ensure that all fans, players and employees feel welcome at all NBA and WNBA events in Indiana and elsewhere.

Pacers and Fever owner Herb Simon had this to say, and it is not something Mike Pence wanted to hear:

The Indiana Pacers, Indiana Fever and Bankers Life Fieldhouse have the strongest possible commitment to inclusion and non-discrimination on any basis. Everyone is always welcome at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. That has always been the policy from the very beginning of the Simon family’s involvement and it always will be.

You have to wonder at what point enough will be enough. It is up to the people of Indiana – Hoosiers – to affect change in the next election. The people they voted into office are taking Indiana down a dark and troubling path, to a place America thought it had escaped from two hundred years ago, when bigotry was commonplace.

We have slowly, if imperfectly, and in fits and starts, but sometimes with glorious success like the Emancipation Proclamation, the Civil Rights Act, and other shining deeds, continued to crawl out of that gutter. We might never reach our exceptions and our hopes, but we continue to try.

In a single act, the state of Indiana has committed itself to 13th century-style bigotry and persecution of minorities in the name of religion. It is illegal, un-American, and it is wrong, and if it is to end, Hoosiers will have to wake up and realize they’ve put fascists in charge of their state. All we can do meanwhile, is fly over the accursed place, or if you have to stop, enter only places that bear this sign:


31 Replies to “Angie’s List Halts Indiana HQ Expansion in Response to Religious Tyranny Act”

  1. I do feel for the good people in the state. They exist and they didn’t vote for this and yet they will suffer from loss of business along with everyone else.

    Is there a way for this bs bill to be redacted or invalidated, aside from the Supreme Court? It should be ruled unconstitutional eventually, but can anything be done in the near term?

  2. Pence said he was shocked at the blowback. These christian teabaggers are convinced they are working on gawd’s behalf and there is no room for anyone else who does not buy in their “real amurrika”. It is only their way or the highway in their deluded bubblebrains and they are the only ones who know what is best for their country.

    I have read that pence has been considering a run for the presidency. He can kiss that delusion bye bye.

  3. SD, yes the good people of Indiana will suffer! They need to get out and vote Pence and all those who supported this bill out of office for costing Indianians jobs!
    How did this extremism that’s taken over the republican party get so hateful. I guess the 3 G’s are more relevant today than ever!

  4. For me, I put full blame on the rethug party. What is taking place in our country
    Proving, that for years, this kind of talk and bill passing has been boiling under ground. Suddenly, it is ok. Because the rethugs have made it so.

  5. Mike Pence went from being one of those hard assed tea partiers in the house, who wanted to shut the government down. To the Indiana statehouse, where it seems he may get his wish. He may shutter the whole state of Indiana with his stupidity and bigotry.

  6. This has been going on for far too long.

    They have made it almost impossible for a woman to get an abortion, regardless of her needs.

    We have SCOTUS allowing companies to determine what type of birth control, their female employees can use. With some not allowing any the use or dispensation of ANY birth control.

    Now we have this divide about refusing service to LGBT people.

    Pence can claim that this is not about discrimination against the LGBT community, and he just doesn’t understand what the commotion is about. We all know that that is a lie.

    When is this crap going to end? I don’t know about anybody else but, personally, I’m am completely sick of it. It is just one thing after another with the christian zealots believing they have the right to control this country.

    It needs to stop!

  7. It is fitting that those conservative neanderthals who sow the seeds of bigotry should reap the resulting backlash where it hurts them the most — in the wallet.

  8. I just read that Pence stated publicly that he wasn’t about to change this law in any way. I also read that Angies List is stopping an expansion project that will cost Hoosiers 1000 jobs. Way to go Pence!

    Most of these laws in other states have been sneaked in and have gone quietly under reported, but that’s over now. Indiana will be the 2016 poster child for religious bigotry and the goper presidential candidates will have to sign on with this crappola to get through the primaries only to lose the sane voters in the general election.

    I feel bad for the people of Indiana, but they are about to reap what they have sown.

    The backlash against this “freedom of religion” garbage is going to be felt in every state that has such laws on the books. We should be grateful to the gopers for making it a national issue. It ain’t just Indiana.

  9. This mess in 21 states, are roac…Republican controlled. The party of hateful, controlling people suppressing the vote, now they continue to lie to the public. This is far, far away from freedom. Police getting videoed killing and no justice what so ever. One thing we can attest to, there is one stupid policy or law after another. The GoP can no longer be addressed as a party but, as a criminal enterprise. An organized crime syndicate that is practicing the same oppression that brought Hitler to power years ago. We know what happened after that. And besides, they’re nothing but a gang of OBGYN’s any way. We’ll soon have to report every erection to homeland security without fail, or be executed.

  10. Good for Angie’s List. I just don’t understand how the CEO (or any sane person) can fix his mouth to say he’s proud to be a Republican.

  11. Its a great lesson to us all — GET OUT & VOTE! Take your family, neighbors, friends and make it an event.

  12. *sighs* Can we not condemn those that voted against Pence, his party and his ideals and are still fighting from within the state? Please?

  13. Mike Pence is one stupid MOFO
    Mike Pence
    There are very few members of congress with whom I’ve ever had the opportunity to discuss a substantive matter of public policy. But as it happens, one of them — the one with whom I’ve had the second-longest exchange — is Mike Pence (R-IN) who I’ve seen on television today repeatedly discussing the Republican Study Group’s “plan” for the financial crisis. And I can tell you this about Mike Pence: he has no idea what he’s talking about. The man is a fool, who deserves to be laughed at. He’s almost stupid enough to work in cable television.
    Read More

  14. And I ask that as someone who lives in Illinois facing a Governor that is the total antithesis of everything I stand for and believe in.

  15. I have noticed many news stories who keep calling the law a “religious freedom restoration” law. I believe we must not allow these bullies and bigots to twist the word “freedom” into meaning the complete opposite.

    I think we must be careful to not call these laws by the name that that these bullies have chosen in order to portray themselves as the champions of freedom and the victims of religious persecution.

    I was happy to see Hrafnkell call this law exactly what it is, a “religious tyranny” bill. Words matter!

  16. I’d love to have a pow-pow with gawd at the local Starbucks, does anyone have his cell #? I’m buying, is gawd a latte, cappuccino or a plain old joe type of gawd?

  17. With ALL the DISCRIMINATION LAWS being signed, I think that it is HIGH TIME that the SANE PEOPLE of the country,

  18. Given how he seems to be telling every third teabagger to run for President, I think you need to be Repub to get gawd’s number.

  19. Meanwhile, Pence continues to be in denial regarding the “intent” of this law.

    Sorry, Gov. There aren’t enough spin doctors on the State of Indiana payroll to remove the stench from this POS legislation.

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