Should We Get Ready To Kiss Marriage Equality In Iowa Goodbye?

If you like operatic music and the insinuation that Iowa’s pro-equality judges and legislators are a bunch of job-killing and baby murderers, you’ll love this Iowa ad from the same right-wing consultants that advise Rick Santorum. The ad seeks to persuade Iowans to elect Republican Cindy Golding over Democrat Liz Mathis—if Cindy Golding gets elected, you can kiss Iowa’s marriage equality bye-bye.

In 2010, Iowa voters ousted the three Iowa Justices who joined the unanimous 2009 Supreme Court decision to legalize same-sex marriage.

During the same elections, Democratic control of the Iowa Senate dropped from 27-22 to 26-24. Then this September, Democratic Senator Swati Dandekar announced her resignation. Her district—which is almost evenly split between registered elephants and donkeys—will either to either Mathis or Golding in a special November 8th election.

If Golding wins, it will be a lot easier for state Republicans to try and pass a ballot measure allowing Iowans to overturn the Supreme Court’s decision as early as June 2013. Golding’s spokesperson has already said that Golding thinks Iowans should have a voice in the matter.

The phrase you are looking for right now is, “Awww, crap.”

Via Towleroad

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  • Andrew Wells

    Oh dear. America is so fucked up.

  • Riker

    Ballot measures in Iowa are still very difficult to pass. It would need to be approved by both houses of the legislature two years in a row. Even if Republicans do take contro lof the Senate next year, we wouldn’t see a vote until 2014. Public opinion nationwide has been steadily shifting in our favor, and by then we may well have the power to defeat NOM at the ballot box, stripping them of their last trump card,

  • the crustybastard

    Democratic Senator Swati Dandekar announced her resignation…to accept a $137,000-a-year appointment to the Iowa Utility Board.

    There’s the starting price, Iowa Republicans.

  • Andy

    Yes, Iowa’s Republican governor Terry Braindead – mean Branstad – appointed Democratic Senator Dandekar to the utility board, but says politics was the farthest thing from his mind. Riiiiight. He bought off Dandekar with the job. Politics stinks.

  • Cam

    If the DOMA cases go to the court and the law gets struck down this issue is moot, so fingers crossed on that.

    As for Iowa, It will be more and more difficult to claim that gays are wrecking the state when years pass and nothing bad happens. hopefully Iowans will take note.

  • Riker

    @the crustybastard: Wouldn’t you take a cushy job like that? I would, in a heartbeat.

  • MikeE

    ROFLMAO @ “operatic music”

    No wonder Queerty never covers real culture.

  • Joetx

    @ Riker – Don’t take anything for granted. And never underestimate the tenacity of homophobes. Making our lives miserable is their raison d’etre.

    I predict that if the republicans take control of the Iowa Senate, we WILL see a ballot measure outlawing same-sex marriage in Iowa. And, like EVERY similar antigay public referendum, we WILL lose.

  • the crustybastard


    Yes, but not if I had been elected to a term of public office. That’s a social contract.

    It really ought to be illegal to make political appointees from incumbent elected officials. It effectively disenfranchises voters, and allows political parties two (or more) bites at the apple.

  • Stefan

    Paul Mckinley, the Senate Republican leader, stated several weeks ago that even if Republicans win the seat, a constitutional amendment on gay marriage would not be able to reach the floor. In the event of a tie, both Senate party leaders would have to agree to bring legislation to the floor. Mike Gronstal is very firm in blocking it.

    As far as the Democratic candidate Liz Mathis, she’s a former news anchor for the area, and has BIG name recognition. In addition, her husband runs a PR firm. Many Republicans in Iowa have even admitted that Republican intentions of winning the seat are probably wishful thinking.

    Add to this Gov. Branstad’s subpar approval ratings and his attacks on education and this election is all but in our favor.

  • Riker

    @Joetx: Of course, we’re not guaranteed to win. We will, however, have a good chance of stripping the NOMbies of the last card they have that it has never survived a popular vote. The latest poll showed 46% supporting same-sex marriage, 45 opposed. By 2014, a Midterm Election year by which point the Tea Party will be starting to falter, a well-funded and hard hitting campaign should be able to give us our ballot victory and be yet another turning point.

  • Stefan

    @Riker: I think in 2012 we will have victories at the ballot boxes, in Maine, Minnesota, and possibly even Oregon.

    As far as the Tea Party faltering by 2014, that already is very much happening with Occupy Wall Street gaining steam.

    Also, I think the repeal of DADT is going to really accelerate support for same sex marriage. After all, the military is the most honorable profession to most Americans, and now that we are serving openly, we will likely recieve more respect.

  • Riker

    @Stefan: Minnesota is a long shot, though not quite as bad as North Carolina. Maine is very possible, and I think if MarryME gets aggressive we can win there. I haven’t researched the Oregon situation enough to make a prediction.

  • Stefan

    @Riker: Minnesota is far from a long shot. I’m working with the campaign, and we are far ahead of our opponents. Nate Silver even conducted an analysis where it revealed that the proponents of the amendment may actually statistically be the underdogs.

    BTW another update on the election in Iowa: There is a candidate running for the Constitution party, which will surly peel votes away from the Republican candidate.

  • Joetx

    @ Riker – We’ve already seen SEVERAL instances where the polls show an antigay ballot measure/referendum not passing, YET WE STILL ALWAYS LOSE.

    I for one will NEVER trust our “fellow Americans” to vote on our civil rights.

  • Skeloric

    Conservatives — making the United States look worse than Nazi Germany since… THE BEGINNING OF TIME!

  • ewe

    Conservative judges are extremist radical activists legislating from the bench.

  • Hephaestion

    This article is so poorly written by Queerty that I had to give up trying to figure out what it says.

  • Fodolodo

    No, we shouldn’t. In order to lose marriage equality in Iowa, several things would have to happen:

    1. Golding would have to win. That’s not at all certain.

    2. The issue would have to be brought to the floor despite the fact that the Senate would be evenly split, and despite the fact that the Democratic leader has made it clear that he opposes a vote on the constitutional amendment. And it would have to be brought to the floor and passed before the end of 2012, as one of several items in the Republican agenda that they will try to pass (and have big fights over) with the Senate under divided control.

    3. The Republicans would have to retain both houses of the Iowa legislature in the 2012 elections. Then they would have to pass the amendment through both houses again—and really fast, if they want to get it on the ballot by June 2013.

    4. The ballot measure has to actually pass.

    Marriage equality in Iowa is in serious danger. The chain of events I describe above is far from impossible, and even if the Republicans didn’t manage some of them, a marriage vote in 2015 or 2016 instead of 2013 or 2014 could still go badly for us. But this fight is very far from over.

  • todd

    Well, once again the chances of completely ignorant people running other peoples lives is possibly at hand. Why do people not see that a general public should not have a say in how people live their private love lives? Of course…maybe it’s because so many people want to overshare their love in every public orrifice available.

Comments are closed.