Law banning same sex marriages in Iowa 'unconstitutional' says judge
Friday, August 31, 2007
An Iowa district court judge has ruled that a 1998 decision banning same-sex marriages in that state is "unconstitutional" and that the ban "violated the rights of due process and equal protection" of people in same-sex relationships said Judge Robert Hanson.
"[This is] a significant step forward in recognizing the constitutional rights of all Iowans. And it's an amazing day for same-sex couples and their families all across Iowa," said a lawyer for the couples who filed the lawsuit, Dennis Johnson.
All six couples received a license to marry as soon as the ruling was made, but John Sarcone, the Polk County District Attorney says that he plans to appeal the ruling. For now, Sarcone has asked that Hanson to put a stay on the ruling and to not allow any same-sex marriage licenses to be issued until an appeal could be made. A decision on whether a stay should be granted is expected next week.
Iowa's governor, Chet Culver has also spoken out against the ruling saying that "while some Iowans may disagree on this issue, I personally believe marriage is between a man and a woman.
For now, same-sex couples can apply for a marriage license for only US$5.00 and a waiver is available for couple who wish to apply to have their marriage license issued immediately instead of the normal three day waiting period.
- "Iowa judge approves gay weddings" — , August 31, 2007
- "First gay couple legally married in Iowa after judge rules state ban unconstitutional" — , August 31, 2007