Thursday, April 2, 2009

Iowa same-sex marriage ruling to be issued Friday

Iowa same-sex marriage ruling to be issued Friday: "Iowa same-sex marriage ruling to be issued Friday

Times Bureau | Posted: Thursday, April 2, 2009 10:30 am |

DES MOINES - The Iowa Supreme Court is scheduled to issue its decision Friday on a case challenging a state law that defines marriage as only between one man and one woman.

Court officials today announced they plan to post the justices' opinion at the Web site at 8:30 a.m. Friday.

During oral arguments last year, attorneys arguing the same-sex marriage case before the high court framed the Varnum v. Brien case as one that pitted the ability to draw reasonable boundaries for society against infringing on the rights or a minority group.

At issue is a Polk County District Court ruling in a lawsuit brought by six same-sex couples that found the current state law unconstitutional. It defines marriage as only between a man and a woman.

In seeking to overturn the district judge's decision, Assistant Polk County Attorney Roger Kuhl told the justices the basic societal underpinning of traditional marriage and family procreation would be undermined if they affirmed the 2007 district court ruling.

Conversely, Dennis Johnson, an attorney representing six gay and lesbian couples who brought suit after their 2005 marriage license applications were denied, said his clients were seeking the freedom of choice and marriage equality promised under Iowa's constitution.

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