Constitution? We don’t need no stinkin’ Constitution.
The Register and others carry reports on Republican candidate for governor Bob Vander Plaats telling a crowd of gay marriage opponents that, if elected, he would use an executive order to nullify the Iowa Supreme Court’s ruling legalizing same-sex unions. Never mind that governors don’t have the power to sidestep high court rulings. He might as well have promised them he would turn the justices into frogs with a magic wand.
Meanwhile, state Rep. Christopher Rants, R-Sioux City, plans to take another stab at the issue, and at raising his own gubernatorial profile, by trying to pin a gay marriage ban on to the controversial federal deductibility elimination bill. The Iowa Independent notes the opinion of a Drake University constitutional law professor, who argues the move to place an unconstitutional provision in the bill may violate Rants’ oath of office.
That seems pretty far-fetched, but still, this idea that Supreme Court rulings can be tossed aside like some two-bit press release is a troubling trend. I’d expect more from people who have committed their lives to public service.But you can’t let the rule of law get int the way of red meat politics.
Oh, and now we’ve got a death threat, according to Charlotte Eby’s piece at Covering Iowa Politics. Sen. Matt McCoy, D-Des Moines, who is openly gay, got a death threat and other lawmakers have received troubling communications. The State Patrol is investigating.
So is there anything else going on?
How about some comic relief?
For that we turn to the Burlington Hawk Eye, which carries word of an unfortunate, confused man arrested Saturday for urinating in a convenience store’s walk-in cooler. It was just a really bad night for Alexander Bessenecker, 29 of Mediapolis:
The incident began when a female clerk noticed Bessenecker meander into a walk-in cooler, where customers are not allowed, according to the police report.
The clerk followed Bessenecker into the cooler and informed him it was an employee-only area.
She then allegedly noticed him urinating on the floor.
Bessenecker became upset and began shouting obscenities at the woman, according to the report.
Police arrived and found a suspicious puddle. A cautionary tale for all of us, to be sure.