April 3rd, 2009
04:16 PM ET
4 years ago

Republicans weigh in on Iowa same-sex ruling

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Michael Steele is one of several Republicans criticizing the Iowa Supreme Court ruling.
Michael Steele is one of several Republicans criticizing the Iowa Supreme Court ruling.

(CNN) – Republicans are sharply criticizing the Iowa Supreme Court ruling Friday that reverses the state's 11-year-old ban on same-sex marriage.

RNC Chairman Michael Steele:

"The Iowa Supreme Court's decision today to reverse an 11 year old state law outlawing same-sex marriage is sadly another example of judicial activism currently threatening family values in America. While I respect an individual's right to live his or her life as they see fit, decisions like this are better left in the hands of legislators and governors."

"I firmly believe that marriage should be between one man and one woman. A state's autonomous nature allows it to change its laws as the citizenry sees fit, but it should be done by the people, not through judicial decree."

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney:

"I believe marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman and the definition of marriage should be left to the people and not to activist courts."

Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee (via Twitter):

"Iowa Sup. Court dec. to allow same sex marriage is disappointing. All Iowans should have a say in this matter, not legislative judges ... must fight to preserve family and amend the Constitution of the United States to define marriage as one man and one woman."

South Carolina governor Mark Sanford:

Joel Sawyer, a spokesman for Sanford, did not react to the Iowa ruling specifically, but said the governor is "against same-sex marriage." Sawyer pointed out that "South Carolina passed a same-sex marriage ban last year, and the governor was supportive of it."

Alaska governor Sarah Palin:

Bill McAllister, a spokesman for Palin, said that as of this morning, "we haven't discussed it." Palin has said she opposes defining marriage as anything but between a man and a woman.


Filed under: Michael Steele • Mitt Romney
soundoff (96 Responses)
  1. Tom

    To Michael Steele who said "A state's autonomous nature allows it to change its laws as the citizenry sees fit, but it should be done by the people, not through judicial decree."

    I wonder how he would feel if Iowa, or Kansas, or California decided to "legislate" that a marriage is only available to people of the same race?

    In fact, that was state law for many years back in the 1950s, where it was "unconstitutional" for whites to marry blacks, or blacks to marry asians.

    This is not a religious question, it is a Civil Rights issue.

    April 3, 2009 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  2. JonDie

    "I believe marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman and the definition of marriage should be left to the people and not to activist courts."

    So what if "the people" decide marriage is a relationship between any two willing people? As usual, Romney hasn't actually taken a viable position. Instead, he's said that HE would imposed his beliefs on everyone else.

    April 3, 2009 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  3. SPB531

    They are just too much. Why is it that when the courts handed Sir Bush the 2000 election they were just interpreting the law, but when the Iowa (not exaclty a hot bed of liberalism) Supreme Court interprets the Iowa constitution as a document that provides equal protection under the law for all citizens it becomes an "activist court". The hipocracy drips so thick they are indanger of drowning in it. I read the court decision which is on the internet for all to see. There are multiple references to the prodtections afforded by the Constitution. This is not a matter of Gay or Straight, it is a matter of the rights of a citizen to live their lives without societal interference. The right of human beings to be equal under the law. It seems to me that the small government Republicans, only have a problem with government interference when it does not jive with thier twisted view of morality.

    April 3, 2009 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  4. Glass House

    Hey Republicans and Christians,

    You better fix your marriages first before you tell someone else how to do it.

    65% divorce rate and plenty of republicans getting caught in bathrooms and hotel rooms....

    April 3, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  5. Steve (the real one)

    @Jim in San Jose, Sara, and anyone one else comparing slavery to this nonsense. Neither one of you are stating fact! Just your opinion! Here's my opinion. This decision is wrong and against God's plan for humans. The New Testament speaks out against homosexuality, yet says nothing concerning interracial marriage or anything else you are throwing up as a smoke screen! If you know your history, you would know the Founding Fathers acknowledged God! Today, the Iowa Supreme Court did not, just like the Mass and CT supreme courts!

    April 3, 2009 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  6. Mississippi Mike

    "Mr Romney´s comments is a joke coming from a religion that condones multible wives for a man.."

    Actually, Mormons don't practice polygamy, nice try though.

    Once again, Mitt is right. Marriage is an institution between a man and a woman, anything else is a misuse of the term.

    April 3, 2009 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  7. Get Real.

    Spot on and a rousing cheer to Tom and Jim in San Jose:

    Republicans: the party of small government: just small enough to get into your bedroom.

    April 3, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  8. Expat in Canada

    If people want to live in a country where the laws of God dictate the laws of the state, then move to Afghanistan or Saudi Arabia. The rest of the civilized world (aka, "us liberals") will get on with our lives. Seriously, our economy is in the tank, and we're back to arguing about who can and can't get married?

    Besides, can anyone tell me how two people who love each other and happen to be of the same gender getting married is a greater harm to the institution of marriage than divorce is? Sorry, I just don't see it.

    April 3, 2009 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  9. JB

    Who cares what Republicans think, which is a generous description of their mental activities. All citizens are entitled to equal rights and protection. There is no provision or benefit on imposing a bogus, fear-based religion on the rest of society.
    The protesters are generally from the same religious groups that were outraged over interracial marriage citing passages that their god intended for the races to remain separate. If there was a vote over Loving vs. Viriginia back in 60's, the supposedly good christians would have demanded its overturn, which today we regard as ignorant, backwards and bigoted.
    If these people are really sincere about protecting the sanctity of marriage, why aren't they picketing courthouses every day where people willingly and knowingly end their marriage vows.

    April 3, 2009 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  10. frank tx

    Blue state , enough said.

    April 3, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  11. Liz

    I am a proud Iowan today! Yay for equal rights!

    April 3, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  12. Brad

    Here is a idea...eliminate the word marriage in government and make everything a civil union since that is really what it should be classified as.

    Someone can still get married in their respective faith. Different faiths have different rules about marriage so then it would be up to the couple to find a compatiable faith.

    April 3, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  13. Too True For You

    It seems any time there is a ruling that contradicts extreme right-wing dogma, the conservatives are quick to lable it "judicial activism". Never mind if constitutional transgressions clearly exist; the right wing-nuts and their Talibangelical base only care about a constitution (or any civilian rights, for that matter) when it agrees with their sanctimonious recidivism.

    Besides, what hypocrites Steele and Romeny are. Steele benefitted hugely from minority protectionism, so to hear him deny others is ludicrous. And Romeny, whose religion is the only one in the US taht to this day tacitly condones polygamy, ought to be quiet on the subject of marriage.

    April 3, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  14. Rob in Detroit Mi.

    AS a life-long Democrat i side with conservitive republican's on this ,
    subject. if it is put to a national vote just like the office of the President,
    Same-sex marriage would lose worser than John MCcain.

    April 3, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    @ jimmy, show said "made by unelected judges "

    JUDGES ARE NOT ELECTED BECAUSE JUSTICE IS BLIND TO POPULAR OPINION (or at least it's supposed to be). Take a civics course. The level of ignorance about our system of government displayed daily on the Ticker is both frightening and infuriating.

    April 3, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  16. Rob in Detroit Mi.

    People want to stay out of your bedrooms,its you who wants people to know what's going on in your bedrooms,I for one don't want to Know.

    April 3, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  17. activate me

    Dumb remark "The people Vote for something or get legislation passed and a few dast talking tongue twisting Lawyers convince a couple of Judges to overturn it. This has got to stop !
    The needs of the few do not out weigh the needs of the many."

    What conceivable NEED does anyone have for gays not to marry, Einstein?

    April 3, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  18. Viet Vet

    Not so long ago it took a man and a woman to prolong the human race. Not so anymore. Just give me a sperm and an egg and a test
    tube and viola- -baby. Now when you get man-man or woman – woman you are minus one ingredient either way. No more human race. My stance – -Ban homosexuality its unnatural. Cnn care to print this?

    April 3, 2009 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    "A state's autonomous nature allows it to change its laws as the citizenry sees fit, but it should be done by the people, not through judicial decree."

    See? I told you so. They're conducting a symphony of secessionist sentiment. They'd rather the federal government collapse and the union break apart than live with not having control over it. FACTS like the federal Constitution trumping state constitutions bother the hell out of them because they HATE that they cannot get the federal Constitution changed to fit their own narrow-minded beliefs...at least not as easily as they can get a state constitution changed. You see, they know for a fact now that they are becoming a marginalized and REGIONALIZED PARTY. What better way for them to find a silver lining than by encouraging secession and start blathering about state sovereignty?

    April 3, 2009 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  20. Allan

    News flash:

    Republicans hate freedom and equal rights.

    Libertarian conservatives like Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan had no problems with gay people, and there used to be more gay Republicans before the Evangeliban took over the Party.

    April 3, 2009 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  21. Bobbie in Maryland

    Where are all these anti-judicial (GOP) comments coming from?? The job of the judiciary is to "interpret the law"...including the constitutionality of the laws. Seems to me that is what happened! Where's the rub?
    Oh yeah...you just don't AGREE! Now I get it!
    Have a nice day...

    April 3, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
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