Friday, April 03, 2009

Go Iowa!

The Iowa Supreme Court ruled unanimously to strike down a ban on same sex marriage.


Here's a link to the legal opinion of the Iowa Supreme Court. Read!

I'm not very knowledgable about legal issues, but it's interesting to read through and see what the court considered in its opinion. I found the argument about immutability especially interesting in the way the court handled it.


  1. i'm only about 20 pages in so far, but this seems to me a well-crafted opinion, hitting so many strong notes.

    one bit strikes me as encouragement for the cal supremes to do the right thing: "While the constitution is the supreme law and cannot be altered by the enactment of an ordinary statute, the power of the constitution flows from the people, and the people of Iowa retain the ultimate power to shape it over time. See Iowa Const. art. X (“Amendments to the Constitution”).

  2. the opinion is also a bit of a crash course on the separation of powers and equal protection.

    a lot of the reasoning relies on solid, well-established US supreme court law -- and that is overlaid with very nice iowa law, which often follows and sometimes precedes groundbreaking interpretations of the federal constitution. this decision itself is based on the iowa constitution, so the US supremes cannot touch it. BUT, it is exactly these kinds of legal developments that press the US supremes to reconsider and clarify the US constitution's bounds over time.

  3. oh, wow wow wow. this is a pure beauty of an opinion! as these things go, very readable and understandable. well supported in its reasoning, and lots of cites to weighty sources. even a section on the elephant in the room, religious beliefs, which are constitutionally irrelevant.

    i can't promise my supremes will follow suit -- news accounts of oral argument were discouraging, and the CA supremes do not hold argument before a tentative opinion is in place -- but the reasons they should are all here.

    heh -- my verification word is twist.

  4. Kathy a., Thanks for your responses. It's helpful to have someone who actually knows something about law give some insight. Thanks :)

  5. vermont overrode the guv's veto!