Iowa to Begin Marrying Gay Couples Today
First license ISSUED: "No protesters were at the county administration building this morning. When Chuck Hurley, leader of the Iowa Family Policy Center, arrived about 7:40 a.m., about 20 reporters and photographers surrounded him. Hurley has become the lead Iowa spokesman for anti-gay marriage protests. He believes that marriage should be only be between a man and a woman."
Waiver issued allowing couples to marry today.
Couples line up.
Becomes 3rd state where gays can legally wed. Sole married gay Iowa couple Sean Fritz and Tim McQuillan (above) get company: "It's been a little bit awkward ... us being the only ones. It's going to be really great when everyone else gets the same chance at equality that we've had for the last year-and-a-half."
Belies the "staid" image of Iowa...
Warning of "circus-like" atmosphere: "In Iowa City, for example, at least a dozen same-sex couples from Missouri are planning to visit the Johnson County Recorder’s Office to get marriage licenses that are denied to them in their home state. Equality Iowa (The Marriage Project) and I’M for Iowa will be distributing wedding bouquets at the Iowa City courthouse as well as those in Cedar Rapids, Des Moines, Mason City and Davenport. The Iowa Family Policy Center, which opposes same-sex marriage, is encouraging its supporters to be 'physically present' at courthouses, to pray and gather signatures for a petition asking recorders to 'abide by the law and ignore the court’s opinion.' That could lead to an “intimidating, mob-like atmosphere” at courthouses, according to Ben Stone of ACLU of Iowa."
Statewide prayer service opposing same-sex marriage planned for today: "Gloria Villanueva is urging people to go to their local courthouse on Monday and pray at 7:45 a.m. She says she plans to show at the Van Buren County courthouse in Keosauqua."
OPINION: Same-sex marriage protects families...
Religious leaders across Iowa celebrate landmark: "Hundreds of same-sex marriage supporters celebrated alongside religious leaders Sunday in Des Moines, as gay couples prepared to marry across the state...The Rev. Mark Davis, pastor at Heartland Presbyterian Church in Clive, said he will not marry same-sex couples because his church does not recognize gay marriage. Nonetheless, he voiced his support for 'all of God's children' to marry. 'We can all be a part of this beautiful sunrise,' Davis said. 'I am in a denomination that will not allow me to marry same-sex couples, but I think same-sex marriage is a wonderful gift that has been too long denied.' During the service's call to worship, people in attendance recognized those who never lived to see the day when their partnerships would be legally recognized."
New marriage forms issued to recorders: "The new marriage forms contain two optional sections. The first allows each party to the marriage the option of designating a title - bride, groom, or spouse - to be included on the Certificate of Marriage. If an applicant for marriage desires to be referred to as either a bride, groom, or spouse on the Certificate of Marriage, the applicant can check the box in front of their preferred designation on the marriage application and that title will be indicated on the certificate. If an applicant for marriage does not wish to be referred to as either bride, groom, or spouse on the certificate, then the applicant would not check any of the boxes and none of those titles will be designated on their marriage certificate."
Five stories, from five years of marriage equality.
A special on Iowa's historic decisions from Iowa Public Television, AFTER THE JUMP...