Justice retention vote hot issue again 2012 - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Justice retention vote hot issue again 2012


At the Sergeant Floyd Monument in Sioux City on Thursday, it was bus versus bus.

One bus is supported by anti-same sex marriage groups, and they want voters to remove Justice David Wiggins.

The other bus, is supported by the Iowa State Bar Association.

They say their goal isn't to defend Justice Wiggins but to keep politics out of the Iowa Supreme Court.

Prior to 2010, Iowans had always retained supreme court justices in elections. In that election, they kicked off the three other judges who ruled with Wiggins in 2009 legalizing same sex marriage.

The people opposed to Wiggins say, his decision on same-sex went too far, and displayed judicial activism.

Bob Vander Plaats, with The Family Leader, social conservative group says if people don't vote against Wiggins, this could lead to the government infringing into other areas of people's liberties, such as property rights, and freedom of religion.

"We're keeping politics out of this by keeping an activist judge, and keeping him off the bench," Vander Plaats said.

They also say Judge Wiggins has under performed.

"He is one of the lowest rated judges in our history by peer review, the other three we're not advocating to vote off the bench are in the low to mid 90s," Vander Plaats said.

However, critics say the anti-Wiggins group "is" making this all about one issue.

"It was never intended, to be used as a retaliation vote, or making that judge or that justice pay the price, for a decision they made, which is based on the bedrock of our constitution," Dan Moore with the Iowa State Bar Association said.

It's hard to say if any minds were changed, but more than a hundred people turned out to see the two events in Sioux City. 

"I don't know if these rallies are the right way to do it because it does get quite politicized and it does isolate into single issues," Becky Walker, pro-Wiggins supporter said.

An anti-Wiggins supporter says he does not think the legalization of same-sex marriage should be decided by justices at all.

"I'd like for it to go before the voters," Dennis Janson said.

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