Yeah, this can’t be good for the Branstad campaign.  Former Lt. Governor Joy Corning (pictured above with Governor Branstad) who ran with and served with former Governor Terry Branstad was making robocalls for One Iowa in support of same-sex marriage.

Jason Clayworth at the Des Moines Register posted the script of the call::

Hi this is former Lt. Gov. Joy Corning.

Iowa has a well-deserved reputation of being open minded and fair. That’s why I’m a supporter of One Iowa.  Our Supreme Court recently ruled in favor of civil marriage for committed gay and lesbian couples, continuing Iowa’s tradition of protecting the civil rights of all Iowans.

Please join with me to ensure that Iowa continues to move forward as a leader in fairness and equality.

This call was made to Republicans, Clayworth notes.  He also mentions her involvement in former Governor Branstad’s Iowa Supreme Court picks:

Corning interviewed Mark Cady before he was appointed to the Supreme Court. Cady wrote this year’s unanimous decision granting marriage equality. Corning said she and Branstad have always disagreed on some social issues but that wouldn’t stop her from supporting him.

I wonder if Governor Branstad had some heartburn today.  So Governor, why’d you tap her as a running mate again?  And if you knew she disagreed with you on social issues why did you have her involved in judicial picks? 

Feel free to have somebody from your campaign contact me anytime with some answers, but I can’t promise it’ll be off-the-record.

Update: IFPC Action’s Chuck Hurley responds: “Joy Corning has given us a gift that punctuates the need for a new paradigm in Iowa politics.”

2nd Update: Bob Vander Plaats weighs in, Dave Price has the press release, and taking a swipe at Branstad:

“Terry Branstad enters the governor’s race on Saturday night without stating where he truly stands on the issue and on Tuesday night his lieutenant governor does an automated call urging Iowans to support same-sex marriages. All of that takes place not too long after his former chief of staff wrote an opinion piece saying the Republican Party needs to nominate a candidate with ‘centrist’ views on social issues,” Vander Plaats said. “Urging Iowans to support same-sex marriage is not only out of touch with Republican values but it is overwhelmingly out of touch with Main Street Iowa.”

He added, “If you listened closely to his speech on Saturday night, Terry Branstad did not say he supports one-man, one-woman marriage. He said he would break the legislative logjam that is preventing a referendum by Iowans. That’s not the same thing. If he wants to break the road block, he should join me by committing to sign an executive order banning additional same-sex marriages on day one in office until Iowans have a right to vote on the issue.”

Oh, Bob is putting me in the position of having to defend Branstad now.  The first paragraph I quote here is fine, I completely agree.  His criticism of Branstad’s speech on Saturday is a stretch however.  Now it was poorly delivered, but here is what he said:

“I support giving Iowans the right to vote on marriage and I will work to get rid of the roadblocks that prevent it.”

No he didn’t explicitly say “one man, one woman,” but he did make a statement against the ruling.  In the meeting I was in with him he said that he was shocked by the ruling, and that there needed to be an amendment.  When he was in Wilton he said:

During his remarks, Branstad called for a public referendum to define marriage. He called the state Supreme Court’s decision to legalize same-sex marriage "appalling," and he likened the inability to put the issue on the ballot to a "dictatorship."

I think it is pretty well implied.  Why would he say he supports an amendment and the people to have the right to vote, if he didn’t support traditional marriage?  Now Vander Plaats can certainly question his commitment to see an amendment happen, I did.  You can certainly question his pick of Corning, as I have.  I just don’t think it’s accurate or fair to say he doesn’t support “one man, one woman” marriage.  Regarding the executive order, even Congressman Steve King (R-IA) disagrees with Vander Plaats on this, as “it doesn’t have an end game.”

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  1. Thanks. I was raised to respect political differences, as my parents canceled out each other’s votes in every presidential election, beginning in 1952. My dad liked Ike, my mom was “madly for Adlai.”

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