The November cover of Focus on the Family’s Citizen magazine features a familiar face – Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats. In this addition of the magazine, columnist John Pailton looks ahead to the 2010 elections while also examining Vander Plaats’ pledge to restore the definition of marriage in the state of Iowa.
Citizen magazine examines how Vander Plaats has used the marriage issue to spur his gubernatorial campaign. It documents how Vander Plaats was invited to speak to a small group of pastors about the marriage issue. The article states that 50 to 75 people were expected, but 538 showed up to hear what Vander Plaats had to say about the marriage issue.
The article also points out that while all of the Republican candidates for governor take pro-marriage positions, it is Vander Plaats who has distinguished himself from his opponents on the issue. Pailton writes, “[W]hat sets Vander Plaats apart is his decisive commitment to take action as soon as he takes office. He calls his planned executive order the Foundation Proclamation, with an overt nod to Abraham Lincoln, who objected to the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision and later issued his famous Emancipation Proclamation.”
Vander Plaats also clearly articulates the three areas in which he believes the Court overreached by claiming powers in their decision that they do not possess. Vander Plaats said, “They legislated from the bench by saying Iowa will be a same-sex marriage state. They don’t have that ability to make law, only the legislature does. Second, they executed it from the bench by saying that all 99 counties will follow suit. They have no executive authority. That belongs solely to the governor of Iowa. Third, they intended to amend the constitution by saying they’re holding up Iowa’s constitution to an evolving standard. And obviously they don’t have that ability. Only the people of Iowa have the ability to amend the constitution.”
The feature story on Vander Plaats comes at a good time for his campaign. With former Governor Terry Branstad’s emergence into the Republican primary, Vander Plaats is going to need to raise more money than ever before to keep his campaign viable. Having his picture on the cover of Focus of the Families magazine will help Vander Plaats create more credibility for his campaign, which will lead to more political contributions.
The November issue also features Iowa State Representative Kent Sorenson. The Sorenson article tells the story about how the marriage issue led him to seek office in 2008. In a phone call with Rep. Sorenson last night, he wanted to make sure that people understand that it’s not Republicans who are obsessed with gay marriage in Iowa. Sorenson said, “It’s people like Tim Gill who have brought the issue of gay marriage to the forefront in Iowa, not Republicans who continue to fight for traditional marriage.”
Rep. Sorenson has decided to not seek re-election to his house seat next fall. Instead, Sorenson will challenge State Senator Staci Appel, the wife of an Iowa Supreme court justice, next fall. The Sorenson race is bound to be ground zero for the fight to protect traditional marriage.
Focus on the Family distributes its Citizen magazine all across the county and it can also be purchased in Christian book stores.
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