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Group hoping to oust Iowa judges launches first TV ad
Iowa For Freedom, an organization started by former GOP gubernatorial hopeful Bob Vander Plaats aimed at ousting three Iowa Supreme Court justices, has launched its first television ad of the fall campaign.
The ad, entitled “Send Them A Message,” began airing Monday morning on network and cable stations across Iowa. It says Iowans for Freedom is a “project of AFA Action” and “the National Organization for Marriage.”
The group is targeting the judges because of the Supreme Court’s unanimous ruling in Varnum v. Brien, a decision that effectively legalized same-sex marriage by declaring the state’s Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional.
“The idea of the ad informs Iowa voters the Iowa Supreme Court usurped the will of the people with its April 3, 2009, decision striking down the 1998 Defense of Marriage Act,” Vander Plaats said in a statement.
AFA Action is the political arm of the American Family Association. The group has pledged to spend “a couple of hundred thousand dollars” to assist in ousting the judges. One of its leaders, Bryan Fischer, has garnered a fair amount of controversy of late following numerous statements about Islam. Friday, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow did a segment on Fischer, wondering how Republican officials could share a stage with him at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C.
National Organization for Marriage is a New Jersey-based anti-gay organization that has already been highly active in Iowa politics. The group spent nearly $100,000 into an Iowa House special election last September. It then launched an initiative called The Reclaim Iowa Project, with the goal of passing a state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. In August, the group held a pair of rallies in Iowa to promote their point of view.
Here is the group’s ad: