Friday, April 3, 2009

Iowa, where rights are protected and maintained

Iowa's Supreme Court released their unanimous ruling in the Varnum v Brien case this morning. Repeat: this was a unanimous decision. Iowans seem to be possessed of an uncommon amount of common sense.

The Court held that Iowa's statute banning same sex marriages violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Iowa State Constitution. The court further ordered that all marriage legislation in Iowa must be interpreted to allow and include same sex married couples. Beginning in 21 days, barring a re-hearing motion, Iowa will allow same sex marriages to take place. See the video below to understand why it'll be at least two years before this can be overturned via a constitutional amendment, a la Prop 8. Iowa, like California, doesn't require residency for marriage.

The opinion can be found here. Evidently some 350,000 people tried to access the Iowa Court's server this morning as the decision was about to be released, causing the server to crash. It's back up now.

What a good way to start a morning.

A message from Iowa State Senator Matt McCoy:

Unfortunately, other than public opinion, I don't think the Iowa case will have any affect on the forthcoming Prop 8 decision. Varnum v Brien is analogous to the Prop 22 cases that led to the In re Marriages decision--both dealt with statutory provisions, rather than the constitutional nature of Prop 8.

1 comment:

  1. One key thing he left out.

    Even if (if) two seperate sessions seperated by at least two years vote to put a proposed ammendment before the voters, more than 50% of ALL eligible voters have to vote to approve it.

    Not just more than 50% of those who show up to vote.

    This one won't be overturned.

    It's also important to note the lack of "judicial tyranny". Iowa Supreme Court Justices stand for retention one year after they are appointed, and then every eight years thereafter.

    Every Judge who joined the decision in favor of equality was Retained by the voters at least three times, and will stand before them again.