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We used to visit Newton, IA every year or two for McConeghey family reunions. Iowa’s a nice place, though admittedly somewhat dull. But today, America has a big patch of purple right at its heart because the Iowa Supreme Court has declared the state’s ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional. Joe Eskenazi explains beautifully in “Will Gay Mecca Relocate From San Francisco To Des Moines?”

Disdain of San Franciscans’ disdain of all things Midwestern has become nearly as clichéd as the original sin. And, yet, there’s always a touch of schadenfreude anticipating city residents’ chagrin whenever legitimately good news emanates from the Midwest indicating its denizens have out-progressived our self-anointed capital of progressivism.

The Iowa Supreme Court this morning did what many observers feel its San Francisco-based California colleagues will not — rule that a ban on same-sex marriage violates the constitutional rights of gay and lesbian couples. This morning’s decision adds Iowa to the very short list of states in which same-sex marriage is legal — Connecticut, Massachusetts, and, now, The Tall Corn State. Perhaps it’s only fitting for a state with the motto “Our liberties we prize and our rights we will maintain.”

From what I have read, if conservatives want to defeat this, it will require the legislature to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot. This could be done by 2011, and even then Iowa residents may not support it. Personally, I’m just really proud to see progress being made on this issue, from of all places, the “fly over country” where I grew up. (Well, I’m from Illinois, but I can still root for the hawkeyes on this one.)

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Categories: Excerpts, Featured, Good Reads, News and Reaction, Politics