After three Iowa State Supreme Court justices were removed from office last November (which was due in large part to a statewide ouster campaign run by the National Organization for Marriage) Iowa Republicans are taking yet another step to repeal same-sex marriage rights.
Fifty-six of the GOP’s 60-member majority have signed on as co-sponsors to a bill that would not only ban same-sex marriage, but would also ban civil unions, domestic partnerships and any other legal recognition of same-sex couples.
Fifty-six of the GOP’s 60-member majority signed on as co-sponsors to House Joint Resolution 6. Four Republican lawmakers — Peter Cownie, Steven Lukan, Scott Raecker and David Tjepkes — and all 40 Democrats refused to sign on as co-sponsors. The legislation goes beyond just banning same-sex marriage. It would also ban civil unions, domestic partnerships and any other legal recognition of same-sex couples.
There have been numerous previous attempts by the Iowa legislature to invalidate the 2009 Varnum v. Brien decision — gay marriage opponents came closest to repeal in 2004 when a bill cleared the Iowa House but fell one vote shy of passage in the Senate, with four Republicans joining all 21 Democrats to kill the measure .
Democrats hold a 26-24 advantage in the Iowa Senate and Majority Leader Mike Gronstal has vowed to block any vote on an amendment to the state’s constitution that would ban same-sex marriage.
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