Here's something Indiana lawmakers probably didn't account for in their annual budget—spending $2 million on a global public relations firm to stanch the bleeding from the "right to discriminate" bill they enacted. And that doesn't even include the money they'll sink into ad buys. Tom LoBianco and Tony Cook have the details
Indiana's economic development and tourism agencies announced Monday they have hired global PR firm Porter Novelli to help rebuild the state's image in the wake of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act debacle...
"The recent controversy has advanced the thinking of just a lot of people, that you can't take for granted that people know what Indiana is," said Chris Cotterill, general counsel for the Indiana Economic Development Corp.
The news surfaced after a poll commissioned
by the Human Rights Campaign found that 75 percent of Indiana voters believe the state's reputation has been badly damaged.
Indiana Gov. Mike Pence's favorability rating among voters has also taken a dive. Before the fiasco, Pence was riding high with approval ratings of 66 percent in January and 62 percent in February. That support has dropped of by more than 20 points.
HRC’s April poll finds Pence’s personal approval rating essentially tied at 39 percent favorable to 38 percent unfavorable. Separately, 53 percent of voters said the RFRA fight gave them a less favorable impression of Pence.
Surprisingly, Indiana's story isn't enough of a cautionary tale for Republican lawmakers in Maine
who are making their own attempt at killing the state's tourism industry
Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal is also throwing caution to the wind, cuz tourism isn't essential to Louisiana's economy either.