Pleasant Hill, IOWA. – The FAMiLY LEADER, along with co-sponsors CatholicVote.org and National Organization for Marriage, are hosting a “Let Us Vote” Marriage Rally on Tuesday, March 20th at 10:00 AM in the rotunda of the Iowa State Capitol. The purpose of the rally is to demonstrate to State Senators that marriage is important to Iowans and that Iowans want to exercise their Constitutional right to vote on the definition of marriage via the Iowa Marriage Amendment (IMA).
The IMA is an amendment to the Iowa Constitution defining marriage between one man and one woman as the only legal union that is valid or recognized in Iowa. The IMA passed in the House during the 2011 legislative session but is stalled in the Senate due to Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal blocking a debate on the Senate floor.
In 1998, the Iowa Legislature passed the Defense of Marriage Act resulting in the Iowa Code section 595.2 that reads, “Only a marriage between a male and female is valid.” Despite this existing Iowa law, County Recorders continue to issue same-sex marriage licenses.
In advance of the Marriage Rally, grassroots activists and churches all over the state have been collecting signatures for our Marriage Petition. The FAMiLY LEADER expects to deliver over 20,000 signatures to the State Senate next week.
Bob Vander Plaats, President & CEO of The FAMiLY LEADER, commented, “Iowa law currently reads that only a marriage between a male and female is valid. Due process of law was not followed in 2009 when seven activist judges issued an opinion stating this law is unconstitutional. Passing the IMA and letting the people vote is a logical and honorable course of action.” Vander Plaats continues, “Even though the economy dominates the legislative discussion, it is apparent that Iowans want to be heard on this issue as well. Teaming up with the Catholic community for this rally sends a strong message to Democratic Senators to Let Us Vote.”
Brian Burch, President of CatholicVote.org said, “Catholics believe it is important to protect, affirm, and encourage the traditional institution of marriage and CatholicVote.org is pleased to be partnering with The FAMiLY LEADER for this marriage rally in Iowa.”
Scheduled speakers include Brian Brown, Executive Director of the National Organization for Marriage, Chuck Hurley, Vice-President of The FAMiLY LEADER, and Bob Vander Plaats, President & CEO of The FAMiLY LEADER.