An election-year show-down over gay rights splashed into the Iowa House yesterday.All but two Republicans and one Democrat in the Iowa House voted to undo Governor Vilsack’s executive order which protects gays from discrimination in state government jobs. Representative Ed Fallon, a democrat from Des Moines, chastised Republicans. He says the bill is a partisan slam on the governor.Representative Dick Myers, a democrat from Iowa City, voted to uphold Vilsack’s anti-discrimination policy for gays and lesbians. He says the order has been around for seven months and the “republic hasn’t failed.” He says the bill is an insult to the governor and the state.Representative Mike Cormack, a republican from Fort Dodge, said Vilsack exceeded his authority in granting on-the-job protection to gays.Representative Dan Boddicker, a republican from Tipton, said the gay lifestyle should not be encouraged. Boddicker says the precedent the order sets is offensive to many people. He says it extends rights to people based on their behavior.As soon as the House voting machine showed the final vote, Governor Vilsack’s press secretary, Joe Shannahan, distributed the Governor’s veto message on the bill. The message said the governor was “profoundly disappointed the legislature decided to take this up when we have so many more issues facing the people of Iowa.”Republican Representatives Betty Grundberg of Des Moines and Galen Davis of Ottumwa voted to uphold Governor Vilsack’s executive order. Democrat Representative Keith Kreiman of Bloomfield was the lone democrat to vote against the Governor’s order.
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