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Gronstal dares conservatives to push for Constitutional Convention

by: desmoinesdem

Tue Apr 07, 2009 at 21:25:23 PM CDT


Iowa Senate Majority leader Mike Gronstal is on a tear this week. On Monday he rejected Republican efforts to bring a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage to the Senate floor. Read his remarks here (scroll to the bottom) or watch the video:

On Tuesday Gronstal in effect dared conservatives to push for a Constitutional Convention, which might consider adopting an amendment to ban gay marriage. From the Des Moines Register:

"I'm inclined to hope they succeed, if that's their strategy," said Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal, who has saluted Friday's Iowa Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage. "There's a lot of good, progressive issues that we could pursue: a woman's right to choose, guaranteed health care for all Iowa citizens, workers' rights - so if there are people that want to help us get to a constitutional convention, that's kind of my dream world."

If Iowa voters approve a ballot initiative next November on calling a Constitutional Convention, the Iowa legislature will draw up rules for selecting delegates to that body. If the convention approves proposed constitutional amendments, a special election will be scheduled, and voters will consider each amendment separately, not as a bloc.

Some Iowa Republicans don't sound eager to roll the dice on this procedure:

Sen. Ron Wieck, R-Sioux City, said he will likely vote against holding a convention. "We have bumps in the road but we're operating pretty well without going in and messing with the Constitution," Wieck said.

Senate Minority Leader Paul McKinley said he will continue to push for a second route toward a constitutional amendment on gay marriage: votes by the Iowa House and Iowa Senate in two consecutive general assemblies followed by a vote of the people.

But McKinley understands why some might have an interest in a constitutional convention.

"I think the reason there is some appeal at least on the surface is citizens feel very disenfranchised from their government," McKinley said. "Democracies are crazy things. Sometimes the people want to do things that maybe the elites don't agree with."

Although I'm confident that over time a large majority of Iowans will come to support marriage equality, I confess that I am a bit nervous about the issue coming to a statewide vote in 2010 or 2011. At the same time, like Gronstal, I can imagine lots of good amendments that might come out of a Constitutional Convention.

Share any relevant thoughts or speculation in this thread.

desmoinesdem :: Gronstal dares conservatives to push for Constitutional Convention
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Wow! You like up and went there! (0.00 / 0)
I'll say it again, if only we could tap that energy for good.

I'll be in DC end of April, standing in front of WH in an orange jumpsuit with a few close friends, waiting to get cuffed and stuffed, care to join us?

Pleeeeeeeeeeaaase?


[ Parent ]
ok, ok... (0.00 / 0)
The 30th is exactly 100 Days from inauguration. Consensus rules, no "planner-in-chief" so to speak.

The anti-nuke campaign predated the laws that prevent one from blocking the "post card shot".  And William Thomas, died recently after a 28 year uninterrupted protest.

As the law stands, you can march around in front of the White House holding a sign to your hearts content.  But if you stand still between two certain lamp posts holding a sign, you can be arrested, there is an ordinance for that.

The scenario for the 30th can be viewed here.


[ Parent ]
That was for those who didn't know... (0.00 / 0)
It's ridiculous how easy it is to get arrested.

Most people believe that you have this so-called "Freedom of Speech" thing going on in this country.

So, on April 30th, 60 of us will wear orange jump suits representing the 60 Gitmo detainees cleared for release that are being held up by B.S..

I'm just glad that Gronstal went there on this issue.

Most of the progressive local black community here sees this as a victory for all.  Iowa is a pretty cool place, after working back east and in Chicago, we tend to get stuff done without a lot of the extraneous hoopla I've seen elsewhere.

Maybe it's because we found that since we are fewer, we have to rely on each other more.


[ Parent ]
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