Top Stories

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

crystal_sugar_80
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

hermancain_80x80
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.

supreme court 500x171

GOP lawmakers vow to continue push for judicial impeachment

By Tyler Kingkade | 01.12.11 | 2:18 pm

DES MOINES — A few Republican lawmakers were not impressed with Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady’s State of the Judiciary address Wednesday, saying a push for impeachment of the remaining four justices currently under way in the Iowa House should continue.

Cady received a standing ovation when he said courts “serve the law, not the interest of constituents, not the demand of special interest groups, and not the electorate’s reaction to a particular court decision.”

Those standing were largely Democratic legislators and supporters of the justices in the public gallery, while Republicans sat, reflecting a clear party-line split.

Cady spent two-thirds of his State of the Judiciary speech defending against criticisms of the high court. Cady said the justices expected a boisterous reaction to their decision over marriage in Varnum v. Brien, in which Cady wrote the opinion.

“The Iowa Supreme Court has many times in the past decided questions involving civil rights that were once controversial, yet over time, those cases have become a celebrated part of the proud and rich Iowa history of equality for all,” Cady said to a round of applause.

Cady went on to defend the decision over same-sex marriage as judicial review, citing U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall declaring the Court’s role to say what the law is, when the Judiciary Act of 1789 was overturned in Marshall v. Madison. He also cited the Brown v. Board of Education and Citizens United rulings as other federal examples of the judicial branch declaring acts by the legislative branch to be unconstitutional, but were controversial at the time of their rulings.

“This discourse is not new for Iowa, although I doubt it has ever been so strong,” Cady said.

Some Republicans said afterward they felt more passionate about removing the remaining Supreme Court justices because of Cady’s speech.

“I do believe he threw gasoline on a fire and blew oxygen on it at the same time,” said state Sen. Kent Sorenson (R-Indianola).

Other Republicans were also reported to say similar comments to Sorenson’s “gasoline on a fire” metaphor.

Sorenson said Cady displayed a “pompous, arrogant attitude and tried giving the legislature a history lesson.” He went on to say that his choice to remain seated during the numerous standing ovations, as many Republicans did in the now GOP-controlled House, was a reflection of Cady’s speech.

Sorenson has previously said he would help lead the effort to impeach the four remaining justices over their same-sex marriage ruling, however, today he noted it would be up to the House and said he supported changing the way judges are selected.

State Sen. Mark Chelgren (R-Ottumwa) said prior to Cady’s speech he was undecided on whether he supported impeachment for the remaining justices.

“After hearing the new [chief] justice of the Supreme Court, it is clear to me that the remaining justices and the new leader [have] no comprehension of what the separation of powers in our constitution means,” Chelgren said.

Chelgren still believes the court overstepped its bounds when they “enact the inverse of the law” by making same-sex marriage legal and unrestrained in Iowa.

Former Lt. Gov. Joy Corning, a Republican who served under Gov. Terry Branstad, called Cady’s State of the Judiciary address a “superb speech,” saying it was a civics lesson to lawmakers that explained how Iowa has “one of the best [court systems] in the whole country.”

Cady was appointed by Branstad in 1998, the same year the Iowa Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was signed into law by Branstad. That law was overturned in the unanimous Varnum decision, and now after a successful campaign to oust three of the justices up for retention in November, some Republican lawmakers are drafting articles of impeachment for the remaining four.

Gov.-elect Branstad argued against that idea, a stand that Corning praised.

“Gov. Branstad certainly made the right comment that impeachment is not appropriate in this situation at all, there’s been no malfeasance,” Corning told The Iowa Independent.

She said it remains to be seen what impact Tuesday’s speech will have, but doubted the talk of impeachment would go any further than just discussion.

Corning and former Democratic Lt. Gov. Sally Pederson co-chair Justice, Not Politics, which organized a rally to fill the public gallery of the Iowa House chamber with people wearing red in support of the justices for Cady’s speech.

Pederson defended the so-called civics or history lesson, saying it was important to explain the that Supreme Court is a different body than the legislature, and their decisions have been controversial at times.

“My view is that talk of impeachment is reckless and really very detrimental to the work of the legislature, there are important things that need to get done,” Pederson said. “And that a misuse of the impeachment process undermines that ability of to get that work done.”

Pederson didn’t believe the issue of same-sex marriage would remain as hotly contested in the long-term, citing polling, such as KCCI TV’s poll in 2010, showing opposition to it shrinking. She called it a “non-issue” for future generations.

“So in many ways this feels like a last gasp of those people who feel it’s important to prevent some people from not having the same rights,” Pederson said.

Follow Tyler Kingkade on Twitter


Comments

  • Anonymous

    You know;The same group who is hot over “gay rights”,(which they already have),are probobly supportive of obama care also.
    Well,these gay people are a high risk group just because of their lifestyle and “sexual” antics.Then,as they age and can’t control their bowels because of stretching due to un-natural acts,they are going to be hard for staff at nursing homes to take care of.Sooooo,they are going to make life more difficult and expensive for many,many people as they age or become hospitalized.Sodomy is just wrong,morally as well as physically.Gay is OK for partenership,but what they do at home is harmful to themselves as well as all of us

    • Anonymous

      Do you really believe any of that, or are you doing your best imitation of a grossly ignorant person?

      • Anonymous

        CALL THE POLICE!!!! johnsja has the proof from tests on oneself, than that means johnsja must be a flaming homosexual!! Lord help us!! Quick, let’s yank him out of the closet before he goes insane!!!!! aaahhhhhhhh (oh and for all of you dummies out there: this response was satirical in nature to the insanity of johnsja)

    • Anonymous

      CALL THE POLICE!!!! johnsja has the proof from tests on oneself, than that means johnsja must be a flaming homosexual!! Lord help us!! Quick, let’s yank him out of the closet before he goes insane!!!!! aaahhhhhhhh (oh and for all of you dummies out there: this response was satirical in nature to the insanity of johnsja)

  • Anonymous

    Branstad appointed Chief Justice Mark Cady, and he also appointed Chief Justice Terrnus who voters unseated. It’s odd how most of the people who support Branstad also voted to unseat the judges. What does this say about Branstad’s ability to choose judges in his supporters’ view?
    They out-of-state interest groups can work as hard as they want to impeach as many judges as they want but this won’t change the Iowa Constitution. Voters unseated judges but didn’t approve the measure that called for a session to make changes to the Iowa Constitution. THEY FOCUSED THEIR VOTE ON THE WRONG MEASURE! Idiots… The way judges are accountable to the people is through the Constitution we provide them to make their decisions by. If we don’t like their rulings we need to provide judges with an amended Constitution. And good luck getting discrimination added into it. Nothing is going to happen to the gay marriage ruling for a long time, if ever.

  • Anonymous

    Branstad appointed Chief Justice Mark Cady, and he also appointed Chief Justice Terrnus who voters unseated. It’s odd how most of the people who support Branstad also voted to unseat the judges. What does this say about Branstad’s ability to choose judges in his supporters’ view?
    They out-of-state interest groups can work as hard as they want to impeach as many judges as they want but this won’t change the Iowa Constitution. Voters unseated judges but didn’t approve the measure that called for a session to make changes to the Iowa Constitution. THEY FOCUSED THEIR VOTE ON THE WRONG MEASURE! Idiots… The way judges are accountable to the people is through the Constitution we provide them to make their decisions by. If we don’t like their rulings we need to provide judges with an amended Constitution. And good luck getting discrimination added into it. Nothing is going to happen to the gay marriage ruling for a long time, if ever.

  • Anonymous

    @johnsja Provide one study that supports your outrageous claims. The bowel stretching thing is absurd, and I urge you to study statistics of how many women have men do the same thing to them. Are these women hospitalized later in life because they did it in the rear? Gay people aren’t the only ones putting things in their rear. Do some research about your ridiculous claims.

  • Anonymous

    CHELGREN: ‘After hearing the new [chief] justice of the Supreme Court, it is clear to me that the remaining justices and the new leader [have] no comprehension of what the separation of powers in our constitution means.’

    *******
    After reading the above, it is clear to me that State Sen. Mark Chelgren (R-Ottumwa) has no comprehension of what the separation of powers in our constitution means.

    I also have developed serious doubts about Chelgren’s ability to distinguish between his ass and a hole in the ground.

Switch to our mobile site