Iowa Bigots Fail in Motion to Ban Same-Sex Marriage, Pushing Any Chance for Anti-Gay Measure to 2014
Remember that push the Iowa GOP was making to get a same-sex marriage ban in front of legislators for consideration?
GOP minority leader Kraig Paulsen, R-Hiawatha, invoked a call of the House, which required all representatives not excused for the day to return to the chamber. Paulsen implemented a House rule that would pull House Joint Resolution 6 from committee and place it on the debate calendar.
The attempt failed on a 45-54 vote. Paulsen told reporters he was attempting to get House members on the record on the issue.
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, D-Des Moines, said there are too many pressing budget matters for lawmakers to get bogged down in a divisive social issue. Senate Republicans took to the floor to decry what they called obstruction by majority party leaders in barring debate on a resolution that seeks to bring the constitutional issue before Iowa voters. Joint resolutions must pass in the exact same form by two consecutive General Assemblies to be placed on a statewide ballot.
It failed earlier in the Senate as well: "All 18 Republicans signed on to the petition, but 26 signatures were needed to force a vote. McKinley said one of the chamber’s 32 Democrats also signed the petition — state Sen. Tom Hancock of Epworth. 'While our bi-partisan effort fell short of gaining the 26 votes needed to proceed, the voters this November will have an opportunity to decide if they are content with the continued Democrat obstruction and inaction,' McKinley said in a statement shortly after the effort failed."
Aside from the obvious, why is this great news?
That means Iowans will likely have to wait until 2014 at the earliest to vote on whether to amend the constitution and ban same-sex marriage. It takes votes by two consecutive general assemblies before proposed constitutional amendments can go before voters.
More on the failed efforts here. One Iowa has posted a page where you can thank Iowa legislators for standing up against bigotry.