News (USA)

Iowa group wants GOP presidential hopefuls to sign anti-gay marriage pledge

Bob Vander Plaats

An Iowa-based Christian conservative group, The Family Leader, on Thursday unveiled a pledge asking Republican presidential candidates to be faithful to their spouses, and work tirelessly to oppose same-sex marriage.

The pledge, entitled “The Marriage Vow — A Declaration of Dependence Upon Marriage and Family,” includes 14 points, including:

  • Vigorous opposition to any redefinition of the Institution of Marriage … through statutory, bureaucratic, or court-imposed recognition of intimate unions which are .. same-sex.
  • Earnest, bona fide legal advocacy for the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) at the federal and state levels.
  • Steadfast embrace of a federal Marriage Amendment to the U.S. Constitution which protects the definition of marriage as between one man and one woman…

The pledge also states that homosexuality is both a choice and a health risk; the ninth point of the pledge calls for banning “all forms of pornography.”

The Family Leader is a conservative traditional values organization headed by Iowa Republican homophobe Bob Vander Plaats, leader of the effort that resulted in the voter recall of three Iowa supreme court justices last November.

“We believe that the candidates’ positions on core values, such as marriage, correlate directly to his/her moral stances on energy issues, sound budgeting policies, national defense, and economic policies,” Vander Plaats said in a statement.

Vander Plaats says the vow of marriage fidelity doesn’t apply to past behavior, but only looking forward. (So you’re safe, Newt.)

In April, Vander Plaats called homosexuality “a public health risk” akin to “second-hand smoke.”

He also wants the remaining four Iowa Supreme Court justices who ruled for marriage equality in 2009 to resign, and is calling for their impeachment if they do not.

Update: On Thursday evening, Michele Bachman became the first GOP presidential hopeful to sign the pledge. Story here.

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