An Arizona organization has sent letters to Iowa county recorders offering legal help if they want to refuse to issue gay marriage licenses. Bryan English is a spokesman for the Iowa Family Policy Center which is partnering with the group.
English says the Alliance Defense Fund has offered to help county recorders who because of their conscience are refusing to issue same-sex marriage license. "Even though the constitution does not grant the Supreme Court the ability to make law, it’s apparent that the Attorney General and the governor’s office are treating the court action as if it were law," English says.
English would not say exactly how many county recorders might take advantage of the legal help. He says they have received calls from "numerous" recorders, but says since he doesn’t specifically represent them, he can’t give specific numbers. English says the Alliance Defense Fund will help recorders caught in a tough spot.
English says county recorders are "being forced to choose between their oath to uphold the law, which is one man, one woman in the state of Iowa, and the Supreme Court action requiring, or requesting them to violate their oath in the law in issuing these licenses." Lambda Legal, the national group that’s led the fight for gay marriage in Iowa downplays the idea that county recorders or others will protest Monday when gay marriage licenses can first be issued. English disagrees.
"Lambda Legal has invested years and hundreds of thousands of dollars in creating a fantasy world in the state of Iowa that simply does not exist," English says, "And for Lambda Legal to insist that somehow seven supreme court justices represent the will of the people is completely disconnected from reality. And that is consistent with Lambda Legal, they’re consistently, completely disconnected from reality."
English believes there’s more opposition than Lambda Legal says there is."The facts on the ground are that the people of Iowa are upset over what’s being forced on the state. It does not represent the will of the people, it has not gone through the legislative process, gay marriage is not legal in the State of Iowa, the constitution does not grant the court the ability to write law," English says.
The Alliance Defense Fund is providing county recorders with a statement to explain their decision to not issue the license based on their conscience.
You can see the Alliance Defense Fund letter here .