Skip to comments.Iowans Seek to Sack Three Judges who Legalized Gay “Marriage”
Posted on 09/09/2010 2:24:38 PM PDT by topher
Thursday September 9, 2010
Iowans Seek to Sack Three Judges who Legalized Gay Marriage
By Peter J. Smith
DES MOINES, Iowa, September 9, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day OConnor on Wednesday waded into a unique state electoral battle, where conservatives are seeking to recall from the bench three state Supreme Court justices that legalized same-sex marriage in 2009.
Speaking at a panel organized by the Iowa State Bar Association in the Hotel Fort Des Moines, O'Connor asserted that the judges should not be subject to retaliation" from voters for the decisions they render.
According to the AP, Chief Justice Marsha Ternus introduced OConnor at the event, warning that "fair and independent courts" were at stake. However, Ternus is one of those, along with Justices David Baker and Michael Streit, whose terms on the high court will come to an end unless Iowans vote yes to retain them on November 2.
Under a 1962 amendment to Iowas constitution, eight years after being appointed judges must go on the ballot for a popular vote to retain their position or be sent packing.
Usually judges have little difficulty retaining their posts, but this year is different owing to the high court by unanimous consent striking down the state Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), on the basis that it violated the states guarantees of equal protection.
Conservatives accused the high court of overstepping its bounds and engaging in judicial activism by appealing to an evolving standard of interpreting the state constitution.
"The April 3, 2009, opinion made it extremely clear that this court became activist in nature. We say we don't want the courts politicized but that's exactly what they did," said conservative activist and former GOP candidate for governor Bob Vander Plaats in an interview broadcast Sunday on KCCI-TV.
The former GOP candidate, who pledged to use an executive order to nullify the courts ruling until the legislature made a new law, has said the retention vote provides an antidote to the politicization of the court.
We believe it has been politicized and that is why we have the retention vote, Vander Plaats said. The retention vote is an accountability mechanism. When court gets out of balance, the people then have a say and can rein it in. The process becomes political in our opponents eyes when the people rise up to exercise their freedom of speech as protected by the Constitution and the courts.
Vander Plaats has organized a campaign to oust Ternus, Baker, and Streit called Iowa For Freedom, and has been barnstorming the state explaining to Iowans why the courts desire to legislate from the bench needs to be checked by the people.
If judges can redefine marriage, they can redefine who should pay taxes and how much, who can own and carry a gun and whose private property rights get protected - or do not, Vander Plaats argued in an op-ed.
"We need to vote them off the bench to send a message across Iowa that we, the people, still have the power," said Vander Plaats. "Not only will it send a message here in Iowa, but it will send a message in California, in Arizona and across the country that the courts have really taken on too much power."
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And, maybe Federal Judges should be liable to recall after 8 years rather having lifetime appointments...
Nice. I hope the folks in Iowa throw these bums to the curb.
“Under a 1962 amendment to Iowas constitution, eight years after being appointed judges must go on the ballot for a popular vote to retain their position or be sent packing.”
Say goodnight, Graceless ...
Good for them!
I hope that Iowans pay no attention to O’Conner. Her home state of Arizona doesn’t.
Oh, yes they should! This country is run by "We the People" not "You the activists in black robes."
“O’Connor asserted that the judges should not be subject to retaliation” from voters for the decisions they render.”
So judges should not be held accountable? Tar and feathers before throwing them out of town.
Wipe them out.... All of them!!
The judges are on the ballot. The citizens choose to vote for them or not under the law.
Does she believe that the judge’s rulings shouldn’t be a factor in the decision a voter makes when voting for a judge that’s on the ballot? Stupid!
Given that the thrust of voting rights improvement over the last half century has been to ENLARGE the electorate, it seems to me perfectly logical that we increase the eligibility to vote for judges ~ maybe all propertied free white males ~ that way we can fight all those other voting rights battles over again over the next century.
Keep the civil rights agitators going!
If judges insist on legislating from the bench, overturning voter referendums and laws passed by legislatures simply by imposing their own opinions instead of scholarly legal interpretations then voters darn right should have the ability to recall judges no different than we vote legislators and members of Congress out of office. The Founding Fathers never envisioned an active judiciary that would take on the role making legislation without being responsible to the people.
Iowa start to AWAKEN???
Since it’s so hard to find a website for this effort to reign in Judicial activism:
I went to several news articles, and none mentioned this (even those in support), I wonder if that is intentional..I gave a few, I wonder if any fellow Freepers want to as well!
judges accountable to the will of the people will necessarily pervert rulings that should be based on statute in order to retain position.
the founders addressed this as best they could; best never being good enough, they chose not make the perfect the enemy of good. there is only one perfect, and he/she/it aint in town.
one argument for regular vetting of judges is that some of them may prove to issue insane rulings over time.
one argument against regular vetting of judges is that some majorities may prove to be insane over time, thus providing insane Judges and rulings.
i honestly can not work this out, a real chicken or egg thing to me.
“Impeachments are confined to political characters, to political crimes and misdemeanors, and to political punishments.” Justice James Wilson.
Impeachment was for attempts to “subvert the Constitution.” George Mason.
Impeachment was to be used for “the abuse of the public trust.” Alexander Hamilton.
Impeachments were imposed for “unconstitutional opinions, attempts to subvert the fundamental laws and introduce arbitrary power.” Justice Joseph Story.
Very simply, impeachment was the recourse when judges intruded on the domain of the other two branches, affronted the will of the people, or introduced arbitrary power by seizing the role of the legislature. These judges must go. Let blackrobes nationwide understand that they can be fired.
Nonsense by O’Connor. Throw the bums out. Great quotes - thanks for posting them.
It is amazing that these judges and politicians think their jobs are a birthright like the Kennedys. “Public service” my arse. They are liars and parasites.
Judges should have 2 year terms and so should senators.
Followed by two year prison terms.
Hogwash to a major degree! These judges should definitely be held accountable. How can anyone say otherwise? Hogwash!!!
I am expecting these judges will sue to retain their jobs, saying this 48-yr old law in unconstitutional, in addition to being outdated.
Ms. O’Connor, (not US Supreme Court Judge), you are retired now. Please retire your mouth, too!
The judges need to be kicked off the courts when they get too progressive...
Is there any actual chance that the votes are there to remove these three judges?
I'll vote to remove them just on general principles but the real issue must be addressed by a constitutional amendment.
How many judges have EVER been recalled?
This is why judges like merit retention.
NONE, ZERO judges from Bush v. Gore had any danger of being ousted, in fact they kept their posts by 60%+ at the voting time.
I HOPE at least one judge gets the ax.
The Founders were more concerned about judicial independence than accountability to the electorate. That is why the federal system is the way it is. It produces problems from time to time with various groups but should not be changed. Judges were intended to be above “politics”.
Iowa’s constitution allows this but there is less danger from democracy in a state than in the nation as a whole.
The danger was illustrated early in our history by the impeachment of Justice Chase and the treason trial of Aaron Burr. Jefferson was determined to bring the judiciary under his thumb and those trials were examples of why he was wrong to attack the judiciary’s independence.
The alternative would have judges campaigning for office with all the problems that would entail taking front row. “I’ll acquit you if I can get your vote, etc.” The influence of the Democrat machines is bad enough this would put them beyond touch.
They don’t have to. This will show the truth of the situation. http://theiowarepublican.com/home/2010/09/09/a-conservative%e2%80%99s-view-of-the-justice-sandra-day-o%e2%80%99connor-event/comment-page-1/#comment-27989
Absolutely. Just watch.
why is a state bar forcing members to spend their dues money on retention?
These aren’t impeachments merely constitutional exercises othe Iowa constitution. Nor are they “retaliation”, just voters doing their jobs
I agree, the minute judges started writting the laws, we should of ended lifetime appointment.
In fact, with lifetimes lasting so long now, the whole idea should be scrapped anyway regardless, maybe 20 years MAX.
In 1986, there were a number of PACs that were agitating for the rejection of one or more of those California Supreme Court justices. Another agitated for the rejection of Stanley Mosk, a Pat Brown appointee from the Sixties, who was a liberal judge also up for a reconfirmation vote. It was thought that the California Republican Party would stay out of the fray.
So it was something of a surprise when Gov. George Deukmejian, who was up for re-election in 1986, asked the leaders of the various PACs to meet with him in Sacramento. The leaders thought that Deukmejian was going to let them down, and they were quite surprised when he asked them to combine their PACs, concentrate on Bird, Grodin and Reynoso, and leave Mosk alone.
His reasoning was simple. Mosk was one of the most respected jurists on any state supreme court, and he was also a canny politician. Going after Mosk would make the effort look too radical and create a large target for the national press. Better to leave Mosk alone, and explain that they were giving him a pass because he was an honest liberal. Bird, Grodin and Reynoso, on the other hand, could be targeted as radical liberals.
Deukmejian also told the PAC leaders that after they merged, all their advertising would have to be vetted by party professionals, lest they say something radical enough to discredit the movement. If they agreed to this, Deukmejian would provide the full support of the party and make the removal of the three justices a plank of the party platform and his campaign.
The Los Angeles Times issued a smarmy editorial explaining to the unsophisticated voters of Southern California that the provision in the California Constitution permitting confirmation votes for justices was a terrible mistake, and the citizens of the state had a moral obligation to vote for reconfirmation no matter what they thought about the justices politics. That editorial blew up in their face.
Bird lost by 3-to-1, and the other two justices lost by 2-to-1. It was one of the few moments of clarity in California politics.
I like LifeSiteNews, but these judges didn't "legalize" anything. Judges don't make law, and they can't amend constitutions. They decide individual cases, and publish their opinions to back up those decisions.
A horrid headline that just plays into the hands of the Left and their judicial supremacist fellow travelers.
Yes, yes I know they are not formal impeachments in the constitutional sense, just as democrats in congress are not “traitors” under the constitution.
No, Iowa provides for the people to impeach and convict on their own.
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good now can anyone tell me please if OH is trying to get normal marriage back to the state or is any other state doing the same like NH or MA, CT
On the one hand, removal of Activist USSC Judges (like Sotomayer and now Dufus Kagan) would be great; but IF the USSC gets packed with conservatives, and the entitlement-dependency continues to grow with Amnesty, it's quite likely that we could have ANOTHER Usurper/Commie in the White House at that time, nominating even WORSE replacements that we would have to endure for 8 years, in which time there will be no USA to save (we'll be just another turd world country in the UN's dictatorship).
any polling data on this?
If judges want to legislate from the bench. Then they should be subject to the voters like legislators.
Exactly. All over the nation right now the legal fraternity is acting with vengeance, that is with Ego, with vindictiveness, to prove they are the "law," exclusively.
But each and every one of us must live by, agree to, and hence understand, the law. Ignorance is, I believe, no excuse. Judges and lawyers, those who specialize in the "law" are every bit as corruptible and humanly fallible as anyone else on this forum or on this planet. It is demonstrated regularly.
Hence in an egalitarian society there can be NO better option than the choice of the people, no matter how flawed. In a court of "law" one can certainly pay to have a prostitute lawyer speak or research, and a Judge sit as a referee, but there can be no more fair and egalitarian judgement than by a jury of citizen peers. (Lawyers hated the OJ Simpson result). That's simply the way it humanly must be, and it is the ancient Greeks who first came to that conscious realization.
Sandra Day O'Conner here is simply showing her Ego and personal bigotry. This whole contemporary US scenario is exactly tantamount to the RC heirarchy before the Reformation; "they" were the ones to issue judgement, us commoners must not interpret the Latin, and it should not made accessible (by vernacular translation).
One of the major bigotries behind the orchestrated hate of GWB was that he was not a lawyer. And of course the United States has multiple times more lawyers per capita than any other country, and look at our Congress. They need to feed.
I agree that regular frequent election of Justices can also be problematic, but the Iowa amendment seems masterfully reasonable. I wish it also applied in the US Constitution. The Founders may have made a mistake here, but that is a different argument and concerns the moral/ideological background in which they operated.
Johnny Suntrade, the Suntrade Institute
My note to the editor of LifeSiteNews:
I love your site. We push practically everything you publish out to thousands of our people all over the country every day. The content is usually excellent.
But, as an Iowan and a constitutionalist, I must take issue with this headline:
Iowans Seek to Sack Three Judges who Legalized Gay Marriage
Judges cannot “legalize” anything. They do not possess legislative power, nor the authority to amend constitutions. They make decisions in particular cases and then publish their opinions to explain their decisions.
This is, sadly, a common error. But it is a very serious one that plays directly into the hands of the Left and their judicial supremacist fellow travelers.
And this is not mere semantics. The idea that judges legalize things goes directly to whether we still enjoy the American constitutional form of divided, limited, republican self-government, or if we now truly do live instead under a judicial oligarchy.
Thank you for your kind consideration of my objection and for your continued effective fight for the innocent children.
And by the way. The article itself was great.
For Life, Liberty, and the Constitution,
Chairman, America’s Independent Party
I don’t know but I am going to support this anyway, a long shot like this would be like the “shot heard around the country” or “across the bow” and scare a whole lot of judicial activists if suceed! Crazier thing have happened!
Instead, they should be removed because clearly they are complete decoupled, insane people who should not be anywhere near a good office of the people.