Governor Tom Vilsack’s democrat opponent in 1998 is the lawyer representing republican legislators who are taking Vilsack to court over a “pro-gay” executive order. Des Moines attorney Mark McCormick will lead the case against Vilsack’s executive order which bars discrimination against state employees who are gay or “trans-gender”. Senate Republican Leader Stewart Iverson of Dows says McCormick is the best lawyer for the case because of his knowledge of constitutional law.McCormick is a former member of the Iowa Supreme Court.Senator Steve King, a republican from Kyron, says McCormick’s name was at the top of their list of potential lawyers.Vilsack made McCormick’s list of legal clients an issue in their democratic primary race. Brian Gentry, Governor Vilsack’s legal counsel, refused to comment on McCormick’s role as the attorney pressing this case.McCormick is quick to dismiss the idea he’s trying to settle a score with the governor by taking the case. He says it may make a good discussion topic, but has nothing to do with the merit of the case.Vilsack made McCormick’s list of legal clients an issue in their democratic primary race. McCormick says his history with Vilsack has nothing to do with why he took the case.McCormick, who was once a justice on the Iowa Supreme Court, says Vilsack clearly violated the constitution by trying to legislate state government employment policies. He says legislators are on the “right side” of the issue. Republican legislators intend to raise private money to finance their lawsuit, and they may try to keep the names of contributors secret. Twenty-three legislators, all republicans, signed onto the lawsuit. In addition to Iverson and King, Senators Ken Veenstra of Orange City, Lyle Zieman of Postville, Nancy Boettger of Harlan, Jerry Behn of Boone, Kitty Rehberg of Rowley, Jeff Lamberti of Ankeny and Neal Schuerer of Amana signed onto the suit. The following representatives are listed as well: Dan Boddicker of Tipton, David Johnson of Ocheydan, Donna Barry of Dunlap, Clel Baudler of Greenfield, Mike Cormack of Fort Dodge, David Lord of Perry, Henry Rayons of Garner, Dwayne Alons of Hull, Effie Boggess of Clarinda, Ralph Klemme of LeMars, Hubert Houser of Carson, Bill Dix of Shellrock and Bob Brunkhorst of Waverly.