Competing bus tours support, oppose Justice Wiggins - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Competing bus tours support, oppose Justice Wiggins

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For one side, the new target is Iowa Supreme Court Justice, David Wiggins, up for a retention vote in November.

For the other, it's defending Justice Wiggins, in an effort to keep politics out of Iowa's Justice system and The Iowa Supreme Court, in particular.

At the Iowa Capitol Monday morning, groups for and against Justice David Wiggins launched competing bus tours.

Anti-same sex marriage groups began two statewide bus tours, in an effort to convince voters to remove Justice Wiggins from the bench. The other bus tour, supported by the Iowa State Bar Association, will campaign defending Justice and try to convince Iowans politics has no place in the Judiciary.

Iowa voters have already ousted three Iowa Supreme Court Justices over the vote which, for all intent and purposes, legalized same-sex marriage in Iowa.

Opponents of same-sex marriage believe those Justices went too far. Now, the groups are going after Justice Wiggins for his vote in favor of same-sex marriage.

Justices should only interpret the law, says, Tamara Scott, one of those on the bus tour. "They can call you guilty if you break the speed limit. They can even write a helpful hint to the Legislature and say we ought to change the speed limit. But, they cannot now say we're going to make it 25 in the zone. They don't have that ability."

But, THE Iowa State bar Association and the group, Justice Not Politics, in defending Justice Wiggins, says the other side is trying to use out-of-state-money to influence the minds of Iowans.

Justice Not Politics, admits it started way too late in its efforts to defend the three previous Justices, and it cost those three Justices their jobs. Guy Cook of the Bar Association says, "It would be wrong of voters to simply vote no for one opinion. it would be inappropriate."

Social conservatives seeking to oust Wiggins in a November retention vote were led Monday morning by former candidate for Iowa Governor, Bob Vander Platts and former Republican Presidential candidate, Rick Santorum. They gathered in front of the Capitol near two buses with logos which read, "No Wiggins."

After that event ended, another backed by the Iowa State Bar Association got underway.

Speakers included Republican Governor Terry Branstad's niece, Christine Branstad, an attorney. They called for retaining Wiggins, who angered social conservatives when he joined in a unanimous 2009 ruling legalizing same-sex marriage in Iowa.

Wiggins supporters say Vander Plaats claims his effort is a grassroots movement, but it's funded by out-of-state groups opposed to gay marriage.

 

 

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