NOM, Brian Brown, Rick Santorum, and Tony Perkins invade Iowa for “Judge Bus Tour” — Courage there to cover it

October 25, 2010 at 10:31 am 83 comments

NOM’s “Judge Bus” tour kicked off in Des Moines, Iowa, this morning. And Courage sent Arisha on the road to cover them over the next four days as NOM, Brian Brown, Tony Perkins, Rick Santorum and Iowa Congressman Steve King spread their fringe message in the heartland, attempting to tell Iowans how to discriminate against loving families. The tour kicked off this morning and we’ll be posting updates throughout the day. (Later, we’ll also be posting Prop 8 case amicus briefs — or “friend of the court” briefs — filed today in support of the AFER arguments before today’s 9th Circuit Court deadline). Stay tuned! — Eden

By Arisha Michelle Hatch

The National Organization for Marriage’s Iowa Judge Bus Tour hasn’t even kicked-off yet and already it feels markedly different than the Courage Campaign NOM Tour Trackers’ recent encounter with the often-times hostile Vota Tus Valores Tour in California sponsored by NOM a few weeks ago.

NOM’s “Tus Valores” tour organized by the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles to support Carly Fiorina’s California Senate campaign — which Brian Brown was not present for – got so intense at points that I found myself secretly longing for Brown’s politically-polished professionalism. 

During a month where stories of gay bullying and teen-suicide dominated the national media narrative, Tus Valores organizers didn’t even bat an eyelash when a co-worker of Alfonso Aguilar physically assaulted Courage Campaign’s gay videographer Anthony Ash.

Hell, I even missed NOM’s One Man, One Woman Summer tour organizer Louis Marinelli after all that (even though he still won’t accept my facebook friend request).

I don’t expect the same level of aggression here in Iowa – at least not from Brian.  Yesterday, I was surprised when I ran into Brown just outside of the baggage claim at the Des Moines Airport.

He walked towards me and greeted me with a hug.
“Are you here to follow us?”

“Yep,” I replied with a smile.

Oh, what a difference 1,700 miles makes, but I digress.

It’s  nice to be in America’s Heartland.  Nonetheless, the question remains, why are we all here?

Although it may come as a surprise to many Iowans, for NOM, the Judge Bus Tour really has nothing at all to do with the Hawkeye State.  The Iowa Supreme Court’s 2009 decision in favor of same-sex marriage is now precedent in the jurisdiction and, although the race remains incredibly close, the court’s historic unanimous decision would likely remain unaffected by the removal of these three justices.

Rather it appears that the Judge Bus Tour is meant to intimidate – if not bully – judges across the country who may feel compelled to declare discriminatory laws targeting gays and lesbians unconstitutional.

“Many people that have commented on what we’re going through right now, especially with the Proposition 8 case in California, are looking at the Iowa judicial retention election – and even though there are many important elections around the country – they’re actually saying this is the most important election because it will send a clear signal to the [United States] Supreme Court and other judges that they don’t have the right to make up the law out of thin air,” Brown explained during an interview with Wallbuilders Live, a right-wing organization dedicated to “rebuilding our nation’s foundation.”

“Their job is to interpret the law, it is not to be out robed masters and judicial activists imposing their will on the rest of us.  And so if the people of Iowa do what I think they’ll do and stand up and remove these judges, there will be reverberations throughout the country all the way to the United States Supreme Court.”

In a nutshell, NOM is here to send a message.  How will Iowans react to these outsiders meddling in a local election?

We’ll soon find out. 

Today, NOM has “whistle stops” in Des Moines, Winterset, Atlantic, Red Oak, Shenandoah and Council Bluffs.  Their message won’t go unchallenged.  Local organizers, including One Iowa, have put together the Homegrown Justice Tour with plans to meet up with the Judge Bus at several stops throughout the week, including Des Moines and Council Bluffs today.

Get your popcorn ready.  NOM’s scheduled spokespeople include Tony Perkins, Rick Santorum and Iowa Congressman Steve King.

UPDATE BY EDEN: Jeremy Hooper brings us pics of NOM’s bus at Good As You:

We’d seen mockup images of the Family Research Council/National Organization For Marriage/ Iowa For Freedom “Judge Bus,” which is set to hit the road for the vindictive purpose of voting out judges who did nothing more than side with the constitution on marriage equality. But we had no clue that the actual thing was going to be such a lovely shade of lavender:

Jbus 02-1Jbus 01

Jbus 05

Black and purple = the color of a bruise. Considering the black eye these folks are trying to deliver to American justice, that certainly seems fitting.

Entry filed under: NOM Exposed, NOM Tour Tracker-Iowa, Right-wing.

Log Cabin Republicans reply to 9th Circuit DADT stay today Behind NOM’s “Judge Bus” Iowa tour: “Healing” openly gay students before they become openly fair-minded judges

83 Comments Add your own

  • 1. BradK  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:33 am

    Brian Brown + Rick Santorum + Tony Perkins
    = The Unholy Trinity.

    Reply
    • 2. Leslie  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:10 am

      and don’t forget their “mother Maggie”.

      Reply
    • 3. Ronnie  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:33 pm

      I think I’m going to throw up…which one of them is the anti-christ?…… : I …Ronnie

      Reply
      • 4. Rhie  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:03 pm

        All of them. The biblical anti-christ isn’t one person who ushers in the apocalypse. That’s an invention of Jerry Jenkins. The anti-Christ is any person who acts against what Christ teaches. So, I would say any of the bullies and those who encourage them fit that description.

        Reply
  • 5. Rev. Will Fisher  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:37 am

    YES!!!!
    Just what I needed to pick myself up this afternoon: more NOM#FAIL!

    Reply
  • 6. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:37 am

    Welcome back Arisha! subscribing…

    Reply
    • 7. Ann S.  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:42 am

      Kudos to you, Arisha! Thank you for reporting to us.

      Love the lavender bus!

      Oh, and NOM knows that the 9 Justices of the SCOTUS are not subject to recall, right?

      Right??

      Reply
    • 10. Alan E  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:52 am

      woo! Arisha is back in action!

      Reply
      • 11. Ed Cortes  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:50 am

        Thanks, Arisha, for having the fortitude to do this! At least, they won’t stop at Mexican restaurants this time, I bet.

        <=== Micro Check for MORE EMAIL!!!

        Reply
    • 12. MJFargo  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:00 am

      Oh, boy!

      Reply
  • 13. AndrewPDX  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:43 am

    @Eden, Black and purple = the color of a bruise. Considering the black eye these folks are trying to deliver to American justice, that certainly seems fitting.
    couldn’t have said it better myself.

    Liberty, Equality, Fraternity
    Andrew

    Reply
  • 14. Michelle Evans  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:49 am

    Do they even realize that purple is the most visible color used in support of the LGBT community, such as last week with all of us wearing people to show our respect and support for all the kids who are bullied–and those that did not survive.

    I am just truly amazed at their use of that color and hope that it sends a mixed message to anyone who might watch what they are doing. Too bad we can’t get the purple teletubbie to stand next to the bus for a nice portrait. Now that would be hilarious!

    Reply
    • 15. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:58 am

      LOL! Ditto Michelle!

      Reply
    • 16. Kate  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:44 pm

      OH, I love it! Maybe a counter-protester will show up as Tinky Winky? Please, oh please!!!!

      Reply
      • 17. Kate  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:44 pm

        Dear Tinky Winky — Don’t forget to bring your purple purse, too.

        Reply
      • 18. Kate  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:04 pm

        I give up. I’ve tried 5 times to post a link to an adult Tinky Winky costumer, and it won’t go. So….. Google it, folks who are attending any of these stops. Can’t you just imagine how wonderful it would be to have packs of Tinky Winkys show up at each stop? And if they stand just right next to the bus, their little head triangles will show up pink in the photos!!!!

        Reply
      • 19. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:29 pm

        A couple years ago a group of friends and I did the TeleTubbies for Halloween…a bit of a twist however…we did them as The Villiage People :-)
        Villiage Tubbies (I was the leather man…Tinky Winky)

        Reply
    • 20. Sapphocrat  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:37 pm

      At first glance (at the first photo), I thought for a sec that P8TT had obtained its own Big Gay Bus for the purpose of following these chuckleheads in style — it just looks so gay, gay gay! (and in a good way!)

      (Tsk, tsk, NOM — your bus is obviously a latent homosexual!)

      Reply
    • 21. Rhie  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:59 pm

      I know, right?

      I am seriously getting tired of the anti-equality people completely misquoting the Constitution! It’s not as if a copy is difficult to find. Took me .4 seconds on Google to find it.

      The job of the courts is to interpret law AND rule on whether it is constitutional. That’s what these Iowa judges did.

      Reply
  • 22. Wine Country Lurker Grrl  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:49 am

    “Yesterday, I was surprised when I ran into Brown just outside of the baggage claim at the Des Moines Airport. He walked towards me and greeted me with a hug.”

    This just gave me the heebie-jeebies. I’m not entirely sure why. But my skin is still crawling….

    Reply
    • 23. Christian  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:54 am

      Brian Brown is simply happy that his bus tour will get coverage, even if it from only us.

      Reply
    • 24. Evan  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:00 pm

      Same here! I’ve seen him in person, and he just generally creeps me out.

      Reply
    • 25. Evan  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:02 pm

      Same here! I’ve seen Brian Brown in person, and he totally creeps me out.

      Reply
    • 26. Ed Cortes  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:52 pm

      He’s probably happy to see an acquaintance considering those with whom he’s stuck on the bus!!

      Reply
  • 27. Sagesse  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:54 am

    Quick scribe, then off to a meeting.

    Reply
    • 28. JonT  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:18 pm

      Reply
  • 29. Kathlene  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:57 am

    “Their job is to interpret the law, it is not to be out robed masters and judicial activists imposing their will on the rest of us.”

    I can’t. They did interpret the law, their only crime was not agreeing with your dumb ass.
    The audacity and the hypocrisy of them to whine about activist judges imposing their will on the public… when in reality THEY’RE the ones imposing their religious views and morality on the public. The fundamental disagreement wrt the judicial branch seems to be that bigots and homophobes think that the constitution grants them the right to oppress minorities, and progressives think that the constitution protects minorities from being oppressed.

    Reply
    • 30. Paul in Minneapolis  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:51 am

      If judges who voted the way NOM wants were removed via public referendum, NOM’s squawking could be heard on the moon!

      NOM is perverting the intent of these judicial referenda — but perverting things is a NOM specialty. Their hypocrisy is infuriating beyond words.

      Reply
      • 31. Kathlene  |  October 26, 2010 at 12:49 pm

        “If judges who voted the way NOM wants were removed via public referendum, NOM’s squawking could be heard on the moon!”

        So true.

        Reply
  • 32. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:58 am

    Looking forward to the reports from the road.

    Reply
  • 33. TomTallis  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:58 am

    There is a counter bus tour called the Homegrown Justice Tour that is following the hate bus, too.

    http://www.homegrownjustice.com/

    http://www.bleedingheartland.com/diary/4308/three-reasons-the-antiretention-judge-bus-will-backfire

    Reply
    • 34. Bob Barnes  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:42 pm

      Thanks for those links, great reads!

      Reply
  • 35. Calvin  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:59 am

    Dear Brian Brown:

    Both sides of our gubernatorial election have been pushing for early voting. While not all Iowans vote early, many do (particularly those that will vote at all).

    Coming here the week before the election is like ejaculating prematurely. You’re not gonna satisfy anyone but yourself :-P

    P.S., I live in a very conservative suburb of Des Moines and even here, I saw one miniscule little sign. And it got mysteriously (I didn’t do it) torn down. Iowans don’t care what you do in the bedroom or in your own life, and they don’t buy the “it’s for the children” arguments. If you do manage to get them ousted, it won’t be because of YOU, Brian Brown. It will be because people didn’t bother to turn their ballot over and check yes.

    P.P.S. Mormons aren’t so popular here, Brian buddy. You might wanna leave.

    Reply
    • 36. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:16 am

      Brian is actually Catholic not LDS…but your points were well spoken just the same :-)

      Reply
      • 37. fiona64  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:30 pm

        IIRC, Brian Brown is a convert to LDS.

        Love,
        Fiona

        Reply
      • 38. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:32 pm

        I think you’re confusing him with Glen Beck.

        Reply
      • 39. Sagesse  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:35 pm

        @ Fiona,

        I read somewhere that BB converted to Catholicism…. don’t recall from what….

        Reply
      • 40. fiona64  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:51 pm

        I stand corrected; Brown is Catholic and affiliated with Opus Dei. (Teh Google is our friend.)

        Love,
        Fiona

        Reply
      • 41. Ed Cortes  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:59 pm

        Opus dei – aren’t those the peeple who worship penguins? (You need to recall the comic strip Bloom County here).

        Reply
  • 42. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:07 am

    Amicus brief by Legislators from United States Jurisdictions that Have Legalized Same-Sex Marriage in support of Plaintiffs (Appellees).

    Reply
    • 43. Eden James  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:15 am

      Thanks Kathleen!

      Everyone: Later today, because of Kathleen’s amazing service to this community, we’ll be posting all of the amicus briefs filed in support of the AFER arguments before today’s 9th Circuit Court deadline — just as we did when the opposition filed their briefs a few weeks ago.

      Reply
  • 44. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:14 am

    My sister, two aunts, nephew, and three cousins are all attending the stop in Atlantic today (my hometown)
    I can’t wait to see if my sister loses it on Ole Brown Suit.
    My sis has a mouth on her :-)
    I am thrilled she may get to meet Arisha!

    Reply
    • 45. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:18 am

      That’s so great, Mark! I hope she’ll be submitted photos.

      Reply
  • 47. Alan E.  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:22 am

    What does the latest Perry filing mean?

    Entered appearance of Amicus Curiae Legislators from United States Jurisdictions That Have Legalized Same-Sex Marriage.

    Reply
    • 48. Alan E.  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:22 am

      There was a mention of “Add Party” in the email. Are they going to be arguing, too, or is it just another brief?

      Reply
    • 49. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:37 am

      Alan, all amici of the court are technically considered parties in the case (as amici curiae). So every time an amicus brief is submitted, the court will enter the submitting party as a party in the case. They don’t participate in the case in the same way as plaintiffs, defendants, P-Is, and D-Is.

      For each AC submitted, you’ll generally see two additional entries on the docket (1) party entered as amicus curiae and (2) a Clerk ORDER, officially filing the brief and requesting paper copies.

      Reply
      • 50. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:48 am

        Alan, I just saw the submission of a formal notification of an attorney appearing for amicus “Legislators.” I realize now that must be what you’re asking about.

        I’m not sure why that was filed. He’s shown as one of the attorneys of record on the brief and attorneys for other amici haven’t filed a similar notice. Perhaps he intends to be present in the courtroom? Maybe he thought that notice was required, though it isn’t? I really don’t have an answer for you.

        Maybe one of the lawyers here knows?

        Reply
  • 51. Straight Ally #3008  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:25 am

    (With apologies to Gary Larson)

    Ship of fools

    Car of idiots

    Bus of bigots

    Reply
    • 52. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:01 pm

      LOL

      Reply
    • 53. Diane  |  October 28, 2010 at 6:57 am

      If you’re a straight male ally, I’d like to marry you.

      Love,
      A Straight Female Ally

      Reply
  • 54. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Yes, but unfortunately, it is only considered to be bullying someone when it is the Rainbow Tribe and our straight allies who are working toward full equality, not when NOM is trying to change our pluralistic, democratic Constitutional republic into a theocracy.

    Reply
    • 55. Rhie  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:12 pm

      Exactly. Frankly, I am more in awe of our system of government than ever. Consider all the effort, all the court cases, even the small wins for the bigoted side. They haven’t managed to accomplish a whole lot. Not even McCarthyism could destroy the basic system. Man…it’s really a stable system.

      Reply
  • 56. Dean Cameron  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:40 am

    Oh good! I was missing my favorite Soap Opera!

    Reply
  • 57. Bobw  |  October 25, 2010 at 11:46 am

    “Their job is to interpret the law” in our favour.

    Reply
  • 58. Kate  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    What’s going to be on their next bus, Pink Triangles????

    Reply
    • 59. Wine Country Lurker Grrl  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:49 pm

      Yellow horse shoes?

      Reply
      • 60. Ed Cortes  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:54 pm

        Probably more horses a$$es!!

        Reply
    • 61. Alan E.  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm

      They are taking back pink triangles. Teh gayz have corrupted geometry, and schools will have to teach about these colored shapes unless they take control of them all as god intended.

      Reply
      • 62. Rhie  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:27 pm

        I have seriously heard that argument. Also, that Conservative Christians need to take back the rainbow and the word gay. In my childhood church taking back whatever from the LGBT was used as an excuse to further entrench really archaic gender roles.

        Reply
  • 63. Phyllis Lozano  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm

    Now is this a new bus or did they recycle the previous NOM and Vota Tus Valores busses?

    Reply
    • 64. Kate  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:52 pm

      I’ve been wondering that, too. How much money can they spend? New or recycled buses? Phyllis, are you going to be on this tour, too?

      Reply
    • 65. Papa Foma  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:25 pm

      Can someone check the license plates? Maybe do a photo search and see if it is the same tag?

      Reply
  • 66. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    UPDATE in Perry
    Amicus brief by National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Foundation, HRC, American Humanist Assoc. and Courage Campaign Institute in support of Plaintiffs (Appellees) w/ attachments. NOTE: brief begins pdf page 6

    Reply
  • 67. Alan E.  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:18 pm

    The American Psychological Association, The California Psychological Association, The American Psychiatric Association, The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy all just filed a collective brief. That’s a big gun group right there =)

    Reply
    • 68. Straight Ally #3008  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:37 pm

      Oh, that’s only if you believe in science and medicine!

      /snark
      ;-)

      Reply
  • 69. Paul in Canada  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    I have no doubt the justices will be amuzed by this effort – not intimidated. I suspect most citizens will provide a collective yawn.

    Reply
  • 70. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    UPDATE another amicus brief in Perry

    The American Psychological Association, The California Psychological Association, The American Psychiatric Association, The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy in support of Plaintiffs-Appellees.

    Reply
  • 71. Kathleen  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:03 pm

    AMICUS BRIEF in Perry

    Amicus brief by Jon B. Eisenberg in support of Plaintiffs-Appellees.

    Reply
  • 72. Juli  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:04 pm

    Anyone else sick of hearing how “activist judges” are “creating law out of thin air” when they’re supposed to be ruling on the constitutionality of the law? Jeez! Did any of these twits read the decision? I suppose if you say it enough times, some nitwit will believe it.

    Reply
    • 73. Rhie  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:39 pm

      I am! Also sick of the “can’t rule over the will of the people!!” crap. It doesn’t matter if 51 or seven million voted on a law. The people stand in for the legislature in referendums, and the check on the legislature is either a veto or the courts.

      This is one reason I think that referendums should only be on what color to paint the post office. People can’t be trusted to make good decisions as a group. That is WHY we have representatives. Ugh.

      Reply
      • 74. Kate  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:41 pm

        Purple.

        Reply
  • 75. Kate  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    I finally figured out the purple bus — it’s the one Anonygrl designed to go with the next chapters of her tale!

    Reply
  • 76. mackeznie  |  October 25, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    I actually find the color combo very pretty…..so nice of them to select one of our communities prominent colors to adorn their bus in! I dub it Gaybus!

    Reply
  • […] at their pathetically-attended kickoff event in Des Moines. Check out her intro post on the tour here. – […]

    Reply
  • 78. Alan E.  |  October 25, 2010 at 3:49 pm

    UPDATE: Log Cabin Republicans have filed their brief against the stay pending appeal. Comments and a link to the brief at Towleroad:

    http://www.towleroad.com/2010/10/log-cabin-republicans-file-briefs-opposing-dojs-request-for-stay-of-dadt-injunction.html

    Reply
  • 79. Frank  |  October 25, 2010 at 5:06 pm

    http://www.spreadingsantorum.com/
    C’mon people, get your creative juices flowing. Imagine a banner, appropriate size, one bucket labeled ‘lube’, another bucket labeled ‘fecal matter’, pouring into a blender and the contents draining into another bucket labeled ‘Santorum’. Display whenever Santorum speaks. I’m sure he’ll get the message. is this nasty, yes, but this turd needs to be embarassed off the stage.

    Reply
  • 80. Frank  |  October 25, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    …or even something simpler. Whenever Santorum speaks, everyone raise a poster with the following:
    SANTORUM
    FROTHY MIXTURE
    www.(appropiate website)

    Reply
  • […] keeping society in order. Santorum has also spent a great deal of time in Iowa this past year blasting the concept of same-sex marriage, and has been a vocal supporter of the National Organization for Marriage, quite possibly the […]

    Reply
  • […] Brian Brown’s warm greeting at the Des Moines Airport on Sunday — when he saw me he walked up to give me a hug — the nice act ended as soon as cameras […]

    Reply
  • […] Brian Brown’s warm greeting at the Des Moines Airport on Sunday — when he saw me he walked up to give me a hug — the nice act ended as soon as cameras began to […]

    Reply

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