bartzSee the guy on the left? His name is Senator Merlin Bartz. He is on a statewide push for county recorders in Iowa to refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Gay couples are allowed to start applying  for them Monday, April 27th.

Along with the Iowa Family Policy Center, Senator Bartz has a petition (see it here) posted on his website along with steps to take to encourage county recorders to resist the court’s ruling starting Monday. The thing is the Iowa Attorney General’s office has told county recorders that they do not have the ability to refuse marriage licenses to same-sex applicants. The Iowa Department of Public Health issued a statement this week that said that the recorders to not have the “discretion or power to ignore the Supreme Court ruling” and that if they did “failure to comply could lead a recorder to be removed from office immediately.”

Bartz was quoted in the Quad Cities Times Wednesday as calling the Attorney General’s statement a “veiled threat” and questioned why the AG is taking such a strong stand on this issue but has been relaxed on the enforcement of other state laws such as immigration, smoke-free workplaces, etc.

A complaint has been filed with the Senate Ethics Committee by Representative Ed Fallon this week in regards to Bartz’s and his mission to get county recorders to ignore the law.

So do all of us Iowans a favor and email, call, write, etc. Senator Bartz and tell him how you feel about what he is doing. Here is his contact info.

Senate District 6
2081 410th St.
Grafton, IA 50440
Phone: 641-748-2724
Email: merlin.bartz@legis.state.ia.us

And if you’re in Iowa please do not sign this petition. It’s no different than signing a petition that you are against blacks and whites getting married. Think about it.