Iowa Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Bob Vander Plaats is again making same-sex marriage a campaign issue. Earlier today, former Lt. Governor Joy Corning told the Des Moines Register she is lending her voice to a “robocall” effort to promote marriage equality in the state.
Corning was lt. governor under former governor-turned-(almost official) candidate Terry Branstad. Vander Plaats, who voted for Branstad and Corning, sent out this statement late this afternoon:
VANDER PLAATS: CORNING POSITION ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE,
PROMOTION OF ISSUE IS OUT OF IOWA, U.S. MAINSTREAM
DES MOINES – Former Lt. Gov. Joy Corning’s announcement that she has recorded a statewide call urging Republicans to support same-sex marriage reflects how out of touch she is with mainstream Iowans’ stance on the issue, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats said this afternoon.
Corning, who was selected by then-Gov. Terry Branstad to serve two terms as his lieutenant governor, said she had recorded the call on behalf of the pro-gay marriage group One Iowa because she believes “it would be nice if we had at least one gubernatorial candidate that was espoused to mainstream traditional centrist values instead of concentrating on those far right social values.”
“This is the sort of thing that happens when you appoint a lieutenant governor who is completely out of step with Iowans’ values,” Vander Plaats said. “As we celebrate Veterans Day, the beauty of America is that our men and women in the military fought to protect our rights, including the right to free speech. The former lieutenant governor is entitled to her opinion, but I’m certain that she is the one who is outside of the mainstream not only in Iowa but across the United States. The belief that the institution of marriage as one man and one woman is simple, settled and overwhelmingly supported. That is why voters in 31 states that have voted on the issue have voted every single time to affirm marriage as one man and one woman. It is the foundation of our society.”
The Sioux City Republican said the timing of Corning’s call is “too obvious to overlook.”
“Terry Branstad enters the governor’s race on Saturday night without stating where he truly stands on the issue and on Tuesday night his lieutenant governor does an automated call urging Iowans to support same-sex marriages. All of that takes place not too long after his former chief of staff wrote an opinion piece saying the Republican Party needs to nominate a candidate with ‘centrist’ views on social issues,” Vander Plaats said. “Urging Iowans to support same-sex marriage is not only out of touch with Republican values but it is overwhelmingly out of touch with Main Street Iowa.”
He added, “If you listened closely to his speech on Saturday night, Terry Branstad did not say he supports one-man, one-woman marriage. He said he would break the legislative logjam that is preventing a referendum by Iowans. That’s not the same thing. If he wants to break the road block, he should join me by committing to sign an executive order banning additional same-sex marriages on day one in office until Iowans have a right to vote on the issue.”