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Open letter to readers: Today and tomorrow

By Lynda Waddington | 11.17.11

Wednesday was a difficult day for The American Independent News Network, which is the larger entity that operates The Iowa Independent. Our chief executive and founder announced two of our sister sites would close and their content would be moved to The American Independent.

ACS lockout continues; plan emerges to repeal sugar protections

By Virginia Chamlee | 11.15.11

A recently introduced bill could have far-reaching impact on the U.S. sugar industry, including American Crystal Sugar, a farmer-owned cooperative that locked out 1,300 Midwest workers on Aug. 1.

Cain campaign: Farmers know more about regulations than EPA

By Andrew Duffelmeyer | 11.15.11

The chairman for Herman Cain’s Iowa effort says the campaign “relied more on the word of farmers than Washington regulators” in deciding to run an ad containing claims the Environmental Protection Agency says are false.

Mathis wins, Democrats maintain Senate control

Liz Mathis
By Lynda Waddington | 11.08.11

The Iowa Senate will remain under the control of a slim 26-25 Democratic majority when it reconvenes in January 2012.

Press Release

PR: Nation should work to address veterans’ challenges

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

BRUCE BRALEY RELEASE — As US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan ends, it’s more important than ever that our nation works to address the challenges faced by the men and women who fought there.

PR: Honoring veterans, help in hiring

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

CHUCK GRASSLEY RELEASE — A difficult job market is challenging the soldiers, sailors and airmen who have protected America’s interests by serving in the Armed Forces.

PR: In honor of America’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

TOM LATHAM RELEASE — No one has done more to secure the freedom enjoyed by every single American than our veterans and those currently serving in the armed services.

PR: Honoring and supporting our nation’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

DAVE LOEBSACK RELEASE — Veterans Day is an opportunity to reflect on the service of generations of veterans and to honor the sacrifices they and their families have made so that we may live in peace and freedom here at home.

Attorney General: County officials must support ‘rule of law’

By Jason Hancock | 04.22.09 | 10:57 am

County recorders do not have the authority to refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, according to Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller.

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller

Miller was responding to a petition drive being pushed by Republican state Sen. Merlin Bartz and the Iowa Family Policy Center that is trying to convince county recorders to deny same-sex couples marriage licenses in defiance of a recent Supreme Court ruling.

“We expect duly-elected county recorders to comply with the Iowa Constitution as interpreted unanimously by the Iowa Supreme Court, the highest court in Iowa,” Miller said in a statement to the Iowa Independent. “Our country lives by and thrives by the rule of law, and the rule of law means we all follow the law as interpreted by our courts — not by ourselves. We don’t each get to decide what the law is; that would lead to chaos.  We must live by and follow what the courts decide.”

Bartz is asking citizens to deliver signed petitions to Iowa’s 99 county recorders on Monday, the day the Supreme Court’s verdict goes into effect and same-sex couples can legally obtain marriage licenses. Any county recorder that doesn’t abide by the Court’s ruling would be in violation of the law and face removal from office.

“Recorders do not have discretion or power to ignore the Iowa Supreme Court’s ruling,” Miller said, adding: “If necessary, we will explore legal actions to enforce and implement the Court’s ruling, working with the Iowa Department of Public Health and county attorneys.”

For several days his office has advised county recorders around the state that they are required to comply with the Supreme Court’s decision, Miller said, which means they must issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples as they have in the past to opposite-sex couples.

Last week, Bartz attempted to insert language into a bill that would have allowed county recorders to refuse to issue a marriage license as a “matter of conscience” without fear of prosecution. The language was ruled out of order. Later, a clerk to Republican state Rep. Kent Sorenson was found to be contacting county recorders asking them why they were willing to follow the Supreme Court’s ruling, since “it’s not a law, it’s an opinion.”

But the Court’s ruling concluded that language “limiting civil marriage to a man and a woman must be stricken from the [state] statute, and the remaining statutory language must be interpreted and applied in a manner allowing gay and lesbian people full access to the institution of civil marriage.”

County recorders do not have the authority to ignore the Court’s ruling, Miller said.

Follow Jason Hancock on Twitter


  • slincoln

    Hopefully neighboring states have openings for County Recorders! Sounds like they wont have their jobs if they refuse to do them here in Iowa!

  • turkeystone

    AG Miller once again stepped up to the plate and hit one out of the park.

  • turkeystone

    AG Miller once again stepped up to the plate and hit one out of the park.

  • turkeystone

    AG Miller once again stepped up to the plate and hit one out of the park.

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