The Meaning of Iowa’s Marriage Decision

Time Magazine
April 4, 2009
Deep in the rural heartland, a straightforward opinion — written by a justice appointed by a conservative Republican governor — methodically eviscerates one argument after another that for decades has been used to keep marriage the sole preserve of straight couples. "This class of people asks a simple and direct question: How can a state premised on the constitutional principle of equal protection justify exclusion of a class of Iowans from civil marriage?" Justice Mark S. Cady asked. The answer? It can't. [Link]

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Iowa court ruling transforms the marriage map

The Associated Press
April 3, 2009
Until Friday, only states in the Northeast and bordering the Pacific had granted broad legal recognition to same-sex unions, but that changed with the Iowa Supreme Court ruling ordering that gay and lesbian couples be allowed to wed. [Link]

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Iowa shows freedom to marry’s time has come and place is everywhere

Google Comments
April 3, 2009

Evan Wolfson writes, "There's a rainbow over Iowa today -- and equality in marriage has come to America's heartland," and discusses the actions everyone can take to help support ongoing work in Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, California, and all across the country. (Link)

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What Iowa Means To California

Bilerco Project
April 3, 2008

Shannon Minter, lead counsel for the California case pending to overturn Prop 8, writes, "Today's decision from Iowa strongly reinforces that the California Supreme Court must not permit a simple majority of voters to jettison that defining hallmark of our government by eliminating a right only for an unpopular minority." (Link)

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Victory in Iowa!

Bay Windows
April 3, 2009
In an enormous victory for equal marriage rights for gay couples, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled unanimously today that gay couples should have the right to marriage licenses the same as heterosexual couples. Evan Wolfson said: "There’s a rainbow over Iowa today and equality in marriage has come to America’s heartland."[Link]

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Iowa Legislative Leaders: Iowa continues to be a leader in guaranteeing civil rights

IowaPolitics.com
April 3, 2009

This is a joint statement from Iowa Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal and Iowa House Speaker Pat Murphy on today’s Supreme Court decision:
“Thanks to today’s decision, Iowa continues to be a leader in guaranteeing all of our citizens’ equal rights...When all is said and done, we believe the only lasting question about today’s events will be why it took us so long. It is a tough question to answer because treating everyone fairly is really a matter of Iowa common sense and Iowa common decency."
(Link)

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Read the Iowa Supreme Court Ruling

Written by Justice Mark S. Cady with the other 6 justices concurring, holding that excluding same-sex couples from marriage violates the Iowa Constitution's equal protection guarantee.

The decision will take effect in 21 days when the decision becomes final (if rehearing is not sought and granted).  No remand necessary for the decision to take effect.

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Marriage victory in Iowa

Des Moines Register
April 3, 2009
Richard Socarides, a former senior adviser to President Bill Clinton on gay civil rights, said today’s decision could set the stage for other states. Socarides was was a senior political assistant for Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin in the early 1990s. "I think it’s significant because Iowa is considered a Midwest state in the mainstream of American thought," Socarides said. "Unlike states on the coasts, there's nothing more American than Iowa. As they say during the presidential caucuses, 'As Iowa goes, so goes the nation.'" [Link]

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Iowa Ends Gay Couples’ Exclusion From Marriage

The Iowa Supreme Court today handed down a unanimous decision in Varnum v. Brien in favor of the freedom to marry, bringing marriage equality to America's heartland.

Iowa now joins Massachusetts and Connecticut in ending the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage.

Following the decision, Iowa Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal and Iowa House Speaker Pat Murphy released a joint statement which celebrated the ruling:

“Thanks to today’s decision, Iowa continues to be a leader in guaranteeing all of our citizens’ equal rights…When all is said and done, we believe the only lasting question about today’s events will be why it took us so long.  It is a tough question to answer because treating everyone fairly is really a matter of Iowa common sense and Iowa common decency.”

  1. Join the celebration in Iowa
  2. Follow the latest news on Straight Talk on Marriage
  3. Read the decision

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Iowa Supreme Court ruling on marriage set for release Friday

Des Moines Register
April 2, 2009

A long awaited and significant Iowa Supreme Court case ruling on marriage for gay couples will be released tomorrow, likely at 8:30 a.m. The case, Varnum vs. Brien, involves six same-sex Iowa couples who sued Polk County Recorder Timothy Brien in 2005, after his office denied them marriage licenses. Polk County District Judge Robert Hanson sided with the couples in a ruling last year, but he suspended his decision until the high court speaks. (Link)

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