Friday, 5 November 2010

Iowa Judges Defeated After Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage - NYTimes.com

Iowa Judges Defeated After Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage - NYTimes.com
After the fuss over Justice Bill Wilson perhaps we can be pleased that in New Zealand the judges cannot be removed by the ballot box as occurred in Iowa. the Iowa judges made a ruling regarded as too radical by the electorate, and in the recent elections were recalled. Apparently the bench has a long tradition of judicial activism-
"From its first decision in 1839, the Iowa Supreme Court demonstrated a willingness to push ahead of public opinion on matters of minority rights, ruling against slavery, school segregation and discrimination decades before the national mood shifted toward racial equality. That legacy was cited in liberal corners here last year when the seven-member court voted unanimously to strike down a law defining marriage as between a man and a woman, making the state the first in the Midwest to permit same-sex marriage."
I am not sure our judges would feel comfortable with this close relationship to the electorate. Most are pretty conservative on such issues anyway, but the inhibition of potential recall would send a cold chill.

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