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Iowa Supreme Court Overturns Ban on Same-Sex Marriage


It’s not Good Friday but it’s good news:

The Iowa Supreme Court this morning unanimously upheld gays’ right to marry.

“The Iowa statute limiting civil marriage to a union between a man and a woman violates the equal protection clause of the Iowa Constitution,” the justices said in a summary of their decision.

Let’s hope the Hawkeye Homobigots don’t pass a Prop H8 like they did here in California.

36 Responses

  1. yayayayay!! Good for them.

  2. Seattle PI:

    “The court reaffirmed that a statute inconsistent with the Iowa constitution must be declared void even though it may be supported by strong and deep-seated traditional beliefs and popular opinion,” said a summary of the ruling issued by the court.
    Des Moines attorney Dennis Johnson, who argued on behalf of the gay and lesbian couples, said “this is a great day for civil rights in Iowa.”

    “We have all of you courageous plaintiffs to thank: Go get married, live happily ever after, live the American dream,” he said.

    Court rules dictate that the decision will take about 21 days to be considered final, and a request for a rehearing could be filed within that period. That means it will be at least several weeks before gay and lesbian couples can seek marriage licenses.

    But Polk County Attorney John Sarcone said the county attorney’s office will not ask for a rehearing, meaning the court’s decision should take effect after that three-week period.

    “Our Supreme Court has decided it, and they make the decision as to what the law is and we follow Supreme Court decisions,” Sarcone said. “This is not a personal thing. We have an obligation to the law to defend the recorder, and that’s what we do.”

  3. Iowa did this? Well glory be, midwesterners rejoice!!

  4. That’s three states down, forty-seven to go

  5. If Iowa can see fit to do the right thing than why not all states? But at least progress is being made along with enlightenment which guarantees the rights of all. Good on you, Iowa!

  6. From Salon:

    The decision is particularly significant politically because of Iowa’s pivotal place in the presidential nominating process. The issue could play a big role in the state’s Republican caucuses come 2012, especially as it would take until then before a constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex marriage could go to the voters. It’d be hard to blame former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, for instance, if he were dancing in the streets today. Someone like Huckabee, who already appeals to the evangelicals that play a key role in the GOP caucuses, could really benefit from this decision.

    There are also general election implications to this decision. If a constitutional amendment is indeed up for a vote in 2012, there’s the possibility that socially conservative voters will be particularly energized, and will come to the polls and vote Republican. The state swung pretty decisively in Barack Obama’s favor last fall, but could end up being a battleground in 2012.

    • I don’t know. The Preservation of Marriage Act in 2008 on the FL ballot brought out the Hispanic vote in droves, and they carried the state for Obama.

  7. This is great news, thanks for the heads up

  8. The law prevails.

  9. Good.

    Good for Gays.

    Good for equal protection.

    Good for good judges.

  10. Woohoo! I hope this sticks, and encourages other states to do the same.

  11. Dennis Kucinich voted against the budget, LOL.

    We gotta find a way to reward the guy. If there was any kind of a way to get Dennis to run in opposition to Obama in 2012…Lawd Jesus I’d buy some stock in Orville Redenbacher and retire.

    • gotta love Dennis

      • I would never vote for Dennis for president, because I do think he is pie-in-the-sky and batshit crazy on some issues. But I admire his guts. He’s not a party weasel – he stands up for what he believes, and I admire that in a person.

        In an odd way, I also admire that about completely loony Ron Paul. NEVER want him in charge of my country, but give him props for having the courage of his convictions, and not toadying to the party.

        I think honest people in politics is good, whether I agree with them or not.

        • I do think he is pie-in-the-sky and batshit crazy on some issues

          Like what?

          The UFO thing? LOL.

          George Clinton and Bootsy Collins swear up and down they saw one…during a coke bender.

          Seriously, what’s so “crazy” about Kucinich. I was personally a Gravel supporter and heard the same thing about him.

          What’s so “crazy” about being right 99% of the time?

          • No, I think he gets a raw deal on the ragging on the UFO thing – people make that out to be way more than it was.

            Kucinich is an idealist. I love listening to idealists, but I am a pragmatist to my core, and don’t think that govt intervention on the scale he imagines would be so pretty as its painted in theory, once it came down to actual practice.

            Just as I don’t believe that the almost non-existent govt that Ron Paul imagines would be so lovely and freeing, in real life.

            Socialism works well on paper. As does a totally free market, minimal intervention society. Neither work very well in the real world, in my observation of history.

          • Kucinich is a socialist now?

          • DK said he saw an unidentified flying object – whatever it was may have a logical explanation.

            He didn’t say aliens took him up in a flying saucer and did experiments on him.

          • Adding…

            I really wish people would stop bringing up Socialism entirely.

            As the theory states it’s not something to be “forced” or “instituted”.

            History hasn’t proven anything about Socialism, because the theory has yet to come to true fruition.

            It’s like saying baking a cake only works well “on paper”, when everyone is skipping 80% of the directions on the box.

        • Hell, I’d vote for Dennis just to watch heads explode if he won. Doubt he’d be worse than our current W2.

  12. well it least a its a move in the right direction they should have the right to get married just like everyone eles .. personally i don’t think the government has any business’s telling anyone if they can get married or not & its not mine either ..its a personal matter between two people ..

  13. I grew up in Iowa – we still work the family farm. I was married in CA last September. Looks like I will have to have a wedding in Iowa and a barn dance is a must !!

    • I remember how excited you were over your wedding. I hope you get to have another in Iowa!

  14. willyjsimmons, since it won’t nest anymore, I’m replying down here.

    I really didn’t intend to get into an exhaustive defense/critique of Kucinich. I also think he is somewhat naive where national security is concerned. That said, he has some good ideas, and is a welcome voice against the other extreme. No, I don’t think he’s a socialist, but is very much in the “almost all problems and inequities can and should be fixed by the federal govt” camp. I don’t agree.

    I have an opinion, and it’s just that: an opinion. My point wasn’t to enumerate every detail where I disagree with him (and I’m not going to do so, I did all that during the primary), my point was that I admire his guts.

    • Regarding your statement that socialism has never been thoroughly tried, therefore the failure was not of the theory, but it’s execution, one could say the same thing about pure conservatism. As a matter of fact, the pure conservatives DO say that: it failed because it wasn’t pure conservatism.

      I think you are both wrong. No offense intended, but I do.

  15. Steve King (R – Iowa):

    This is an unconstitutional ruling and another example of activist judges molding the Constitution to achieve their personal political ends. Iowa law says that marriage is between one man and one woman. If judges believe the Iowa legislature should grant same sex marriage, they should resign from their positions and run for office, not legislate from the bench.

    Now it is the Iowa legislature’s responsibility to pass the Marriage Amendment to the Iowa Constitution, clarifying that marriage is between one man and one woman, to give the power that the Supreme Court has arrogated to itself back to the people of Iowa. Along with a constitutional amendment, the legislature must also enact marriage license residency requirements so that Iowa does not become the gay marriage Mecca due to the Supreme Court’s latest experiment in social engineering.


  16. but is very much in the “almost all problems and inequities can and should be fixed by the federal govt”

    Again, I don’t know where you’re getting that from.

    Which is part of my inquiry.


    Certainly you can make a distinction between social movements exercised in good faith (pure), and those which were simply vehicles used to gain personal power and wealth.

    I’d also make a distinction between “fiscal conservatives” and social ones. (one could be socially conservative under a system of market socialism, no?)

    We’d have to nail down exactly what “conservative” means.

  17. Hooray! I needed some good news today. A civil rights victory is always good news. This is a step in the right direction.

  18. Great news! And in Iowa even. Wow. I think my now bluish state of Virginia may be a while, but here’s hoping they move into this century sometime soon.

  19. another state I’m a ‘real person’ in, and one that has to equate one of my tax dollars to one of my straight counterparts.

  20. I still can’t believe that Iowa, during the primary, voted for Barack! They’re too progressive to have voted for this “periodically clueless” politico from the Chicago political sewers. But then Hillary was cheated by the bused-in Obamabots brought in to “boost his appeal”.
    Iowans should be proud for this. A happy, uplifting step in the right direction for human rights–including women’s rights!

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