Some of the legislators who filed the lawsuit challenging the “lesbian divorce” granted by a northwest Iowa judge say it makes no sense to say they have no “legal standing” to challenge the action. The Iowa Supreme Court threw out the lawsuit, saying the legislators hadn’t proved their own marriages had been harmed by the divorce granted to the two women, who were living in Sioux City at the time of their split. State Representative Betty De Boef, a Republican from What Cheer, says she’s very disappointed. “I have a very hard time understanding why (the court) ruled we have no standing because if legislators who make the laws in our state and who passed the Defense of Marriage Act…and if a congressman…doesn’t have a standing in this issue, I don’t know who does,” De Boef says. Congressman Steve King, a Republican from Kiron, who joined De Boef on the lawsuit, is equally frustrated. “I’ve been involved in these kind of cases before and every time I’ve stood up to defend the constitution and the rule of law, if I could get it to the courts, I’ve always prevailed,” King says. The state’s high court said in its ruling that anyone can’t just jump into a case because they have an opinion about it, and the justices said King and the other objectors to the lesbian divorce couldn’t prove their own marriages had been harmed or injured. “If those of us who worked to pass the law and put our reputations on the line…weren’t injured…by Neary’s decision…then who would have standing?” King asks. “We’ve been injured because…we’ve been personally affected by this decision because it undermines the effect of the rule of law,” King says. De Boef says the next step is pressuring state senators to vote on a resolution that would let Iowans vote on a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage in the state. De Boef says she’s frustrated, though, that Nebraska overwhelmingly voted to declare that marriages could only be between a man and a woman, but a judge ruled it unconstitutional. “It’s just one more indication that we have judicial activism happening in all of the states,” De Boef says. Former state Senator Neal Schuerer, a Republican from Amana, was another co-signer who filed the lawsuit challenging the lesbian divorce. “The courts are attempting to establish public policy outside of the consent of the governed,” Schuerer says. He says Friday’s opinion just reinforced his own belief that gay activists are using the courts to advance their cause because the legislature isn’t embracing the gay agenda.
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