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Georgia GOP braces for a familiar battle over 'religious liberty'

The state’s leading Republican activists are considering imposing a litmus test on “religious liberty” legislation for the GOP candidates for governor, sparking a new debate over the contentious proposal that has long divided the party’s grass-roots activists and elected officials.

The fight centers on a resolution up for debate at Saturday’s meeting of the Georgia GOP state committee that calls for gubernatorial candidates to pledge their support for a state version of the Religious Freedom and Restoration Act if they’re elected.

The move seems aimed at Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, the presumptive front-runner of the four Republican candidates in the race. He was an outspoken supporter of the legislation in 2016, but he said this year that it should be up to federal lawmakers to decide the issue.

One of his three GOP rivals sees an opening: State Sen. Hunter Hill said late Thursday he would be the "first candidate to sign my name" if the state committee passes the resolution.

Read the entire story on MyAJC: A new ‘religious liberty’ debate in Georgia takes aim at Cagle

See: The full text of the resolution

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About the Author

Greg Bluestein is a political reporter who covers the governor's office and state politics for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.