It has been just three months since the Iowa Supreme Court issued its ruling allowing gay marriage in Iowa. While there were a number of polls taken on the issue before the Court issued its decision, TheIowaRepublican.com poll is the first statewide poll to ask the opinion of Iowans following the decision.
With the legislative session over and the media focus gone, TheIowaRepublican.com poll provides the first real glimpse of how the Court’s ruling will impact the 2010 campaigns in Iowa. TheIowaRepublican.com poll found that 67% of Iowans believe that voters should have the right to decide the issue. Only 27% of Iowans think that the decision was best left to the Iowa Supreme Court to decide.
Question: The Iowa Supreme Court has ruled gay marriages can legally be conducted in the state. Whether you agree or disagree with the decision, do you think Iowa voters should have the chance to vote on a traditional marriage amendment to the constitution or is the issue best decided by the Supreme Court?
Voters Should Decide: 67%
Supreme Court best to Decide: 27%
Don’t Know: 4%
Voters Should Decide: 87%
Supreme Court best to Decide: 11%
Don’t Know: 2%
Overwhelmingly, the people of Iowa want the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment. Some Republicans have indicated that using the gay marriage issue could be politically dangerous because many would see the party as being too exclusive. TheIowaRepublican.com poll shows that not to be the case at all. Almost 70% of Iowans want the opportunity to vote on a marriage amendment.
Nearly 90%of Iowa Republicans support the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment. This clearly indicates that the likelihood of Iowa Republicans nominating a centrist in regards to the gay marriage issue is slim to impossible.
The poll results clearly show that Republicans shouldn’t be worried about making the Supreme Court ruling in Varnum v. Brien and the lack of action by Governor Culver and the Democrat leadership an issue in the upcoming election. The issue isn’t necessarily about gay marriage, but rather, it’s about the people being allowed their constitutional right to vote. Iowans clearly want to voice their opinion on this matter at the ballot box.
Given the fact that a clear majority of voters want to vote on this issue and the fact that the Democrats have acted as though a majority of Iowans would support gay marriage, you have to wonder what the Democrats are thinking. If the Democrat leadership is purporting to “protect rights from being trampled”, whose rights are their protecting? Clearly, a majority of Iowans feel as though their rights are being trampled, and it’s a majority the size of which no state-wide or local candidate should ignore.
Bryan English, the Director of Public Relations for the Iowa Family Policy Center told TheIowaRepublican.com, “The results of the poll on marriage conducted by TheIowaRepublican.com mirror the results of a similar poll conducted for internal use by the Iowa Family Policy Center. Public opinion on marriage is consistently a 65 – 70% issue, and the numbers tell us that Iowans want the right to vote on the Iowa Marriage Amendment. How the political class responds to these numbers will help separate the wheat from the chaff among those who seek office in 2010.”
What those numbers tell us, is that despite the best efforts of Lambda legal and the liberal media to create a perception that public opinion has changed, Iowa citizens still know what marriage is, and they still know how laws are made. The political power in this state rests with the people. They are not comfortable with the court making law for them, and on an issue as important as marriage; they want to have their say,” English said.
TheIowaRepublican.com poll also shows that 41% of Iowans consider themselves to be pro-life, while 29% consider themselves to be pro-choice.
Question: On political issues, do you consider yourself pro-life, pro-choice, or somewhere in between?
Somewhere in between: 28%
Don’t Know: 6%
Somewhere in between: 17%
Don’t Know: 2%
Again, some influential Republicans have encouraged the Party and its candidates to shy away from the hot button issue of abortion, yet far more Iowans consider themselves to be pro-life than pro-choice. The debate within Republican circles should not be about whether or not people have to abandon their principles, but about how pro-life Republican candidates can talk positively about the issue without alienating the 28% of the people who are somewhere in the middle.
Nationally, Democrats have run pro-life, pro-Second Amendment candidates to knock off Republican incumbents or win open seats in rural states and congressional districts. While the issue of abortion will always incite debate, Iowa Republicans don’t have to abandon the issue in order to win on Election Day. However, some of our candidates need to do a better job when speaking about the issue. With 69% of Republicans identifying themselves as pro-life, it would be difficult to see a pro-choice candidate win a Republican primary.
TheIowaRepublican.com poll also asked respondents what issues they feel are the most important.
Question: Of the following list of issues, which are the most important to you? (Up to three answers).
Jobs and Unemployment: 35(Statewide) – 17(Republican)
The Economy: 38(Statewide) – 29(Republican)
Education: 23(Statewide) – 17(Republican)
Taxes: 17(Statewide) – 28(Republican)
Government Spending: 24(Statewide) – 39(Republican)
Agriculture: 9(Statewide) – 12(Republican)
Moral Values: 22(Statewide) – 38(Republican)
Healthcare: 37(Statewide) – 22(Republican)
Illegal Immigration: 16(Statewide) – 19(Republican)
Conservative Republicans don’t have to be ashamed, embarrassed, or chagrined about believing in the sanctity of life or the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman. Clearly, Iowans agree with them on those issues. We have in front of us a fertile landscape. Republicans in Iowa represent the vast majority of Iowans. We have nothing to be ashamed of, and in fact, we have quite a lot to be proud of and build upon.
• The economy, jobs and fiscal issues are top priorities for most Iowans. They are the top issues for Republicans as well.
• A clear majority of Iowans are either pro-life or somewhere in the middle. So, too, are the vast majority of Republicans in this state.
• A clear majority of Iowans want the issue of gay marriage to go to a vote of the people. So do a huge majority of Republicans.
• Republicans are about trusting people to make their own decisions, while Democrats believe that government is best suited to make decisions for people.
The Democrats favor not allowing the people an opportunity to vote on gay marriage. They have instead endorsed the decision the Supreme Court made while ignoring the will of the people. Iowa Democrats have made it clear that they want to raise your taxes. They know better how to spend your money than you do. They kowtow to the labor unions because only the unions will defend the people from the villains who create jobs. Iowa Democrats have spent the state a BILLION dollars in debt in just a few short years. They don’t have to act like normal people do and balance their budget and live within their means. Furthermore, Governor Culver has taken a “wait and see” attitude towards balancing Iowa’s budget.
So, as we look to the 2010 elections, ask this question: who represents the people of Iowa?
I think the answer is rather clear. The poll numbers don’t lie.
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