Iowa likely to release gay marriage ruling tomorrow

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

The Iowa Supreme Court is likely to release its decision on gay marriage tomorrow (Friday), according to reports.

The lawsuit, Varnum vs. Brien, involves six same-sex Iowa couples who sued Polk County Recorder Timothy Brien in 2005 after they were denied marriage licences by his office.

They are challenging state laws which say marriage can only be between a man and a woman.

The Des Moines Register reports that the court, which has been reviewing the lower court’s ruling, could tomorrow overturn the ban on gay marriage.

Marriage for same-sex couples is currently legal in Massachusetts and Connecticut.

Legal unions to same-sex couples with all the rights and responsibilities of marriage are available to couples in Vermont, New Jersey and New Hampshire.

Last month, openly gay Iowa state senator Matt McCoy (Democrat) introduced legislation that would make civil marriages in Iowa gender neutral.

The bill would remove words such as ‘husband’ and ‘wife’ from the state’s laws, replacing them with ‘spouse’.

The legislation means that if the Iowa Supreme Court was to rule that the state’s Defence of Marriage Act is unconstitutional, same-sex marriage would be legal in Iowa and the language in laws would have to reflect that.