Thursday, January 7, 2010

King joins fight to stop gay marriage in D.C.

Republican U.S. Rep. Steve King is one of 37 members of Congress and two senators to sign on to a legal brief filed in support of a lawsuit calling for a voter referendum on whether same-sex marriage should be legalized in the nation’s capitol.

Rep. Steve King, R-Kiron
Last month, the Washington, D.C., City Council voted 11 to 2 to legalize same-sex marriage, and the district’s mayor signed the bill shortly before Christmas. But Congress has the authority to block any law passed by the council, although Democratic control of both chambers makes that unlikely.

The legal brief King signed was submitted Wednesday to D.C. Superior Court by televangelist Pat Robertson’s American Center for Law and Justice.

Among the lawmakers joining King are Republican Reps. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, Mike Pence of Indiana and Minority Whip Eric Cantor of Virginia.

The liberal blog Iowa Progress pointed out the potential hypocrisy of King moving to overturn the DC City Council vote last month, saying King’s opposition to the Iowa Supreme Court’s decision to legalize same-sex marriage was because they were legislating from the bench. This is a case of “legislating from the legislature,” so while he may not agree with their decision he should be willing to let it stand. And if he doesn’t “all these claims about defending judicial minimalism and popular sovereignty will just seem like excuses for homophobia”.

This isn’t the first time the Kiron Republican has turned his attention to D.C.’s local politics. Last March he helped stall a bill granting the District of Columbia full voting rights in the House of Representatives by attaching an amendment gutting the city’s gun laws.

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