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IA Gay Rights Group Fears for Marriage Equality in Special Election

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Gay rights advocates in Iowa are calling this November’s special election to fill a vacant seat in the nearly-deadlocked state Senate a “do-or-die moment.”

During a conference call Wednesday, One Iowa Executive Director Troy Price said that all the work his organization has done over the past few years “took a step backward” when Senator Swati Dandekar resigned last Friday. The Democrat has accepted a six-figure position on the state’s utilities board.

Dandekar’s departure now leaves the Democrats with a ONE-MEMBER majority in the state Senate, which could be in jeopardy if a GOP candidate wins Dandekar’s traditionally-Republican district on November 8th.

Price says if that’s the case, the first item on the Senate’s agenda could very well be repealing the state’s gay marriage law.

PRICE: From our perspective here at One Iowa, you know, this is obviously a great threat to marriage equality in this state. We are very concerned about this race, and you know, we’re going to do everything that we possibly can. So we have been mobilizing our members, making sure our members are aware first of all that this election is going to be happening, [and] mobilizing our volunteer base and doing what we can to help support Senator Gronstal and the pro-equality majority.

State Republican delegates selected Cedar Rapids businesswoman Cindy Golding as their candidate for the special election during a caucus event Thursday. Golding’s likely Democratic opponent is Liz Mathis, a former TV anchorwoman.

One Iowa’s Troy Price says he hopes Mathis’s name-recognition will ultimately help Democrats maintain their VERY SLIM majority in the state Senate, and keep marriage equality secure.


Written by Xorje Olivares

September 26, 2011 at 7:45 AM

2 Responses

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  1. Interesting how the timing on Senator Swati Dandekar new job offer from a Republican governor happened at this time. Usually Republican Governors offer big jobs to other Republicans.

    brtbrkrJohn Bartlett

    September 26, 2011 at 9:11 AM

    • To paraphrase the movie “The Big Easy,” Iowa politics is a remarkable environment for coincidence.

      OutQ News staff

      September 26, 2011 at 9:44 AM

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