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Branstad Minimizes Effect of Marriage Ruling

Joyce Russell/IPR file photo
Governor Terry Branstad at Weekly News Conference, June 29 2015.

Governor Branstad says last week’s momentous U.S. Supreme Court ruling will not have a big impact in Iowa, since same-sex marriage has been well-established in the state since 2009.  

The governor today commented on the fact that county officials in other states may try to deny licenses to same-sex couples in protest.   

Branstad says he’s not aware of any way that could happen here.

“I know there are a lot of people concerned about the court decision,” Branstad says.   “I respect the division that occurs in this country but we have an obligation to follow the law.”  

But Branstad says the U.S. Supreme Court’s five-to-four decision is not going to change people’s strongly-held views on the issue.    

The Attorney General of Texas last week said county clerks can withhold licenses if they oppose same-sex marriage.    Branstad says that’s Texas and not Iowa.

“We’ve gone through it in Iowa and we’ve lived with the decision,” Branstad says, referring to the unanimous 2009 Iowa Supreme Court ruling throwing out Iowa’s law banning same-sex marriage.   “People have lived with the consequences of it. “

The platform for the Republican Party of Iowa includes opposition to same-sex marriage.   Branstad says that’s a grass-roots document and he will not try to tell delegates to the state convention what to include in the party platform.