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Iowa Government Challenging Lesbian Parental Ruling

Iowa Government Challenging Lesbian Parental Ruling


Under Iowa governor Terry Branstad, the state department of public health will appeal a county court ruling that granted a lesbian couple the right to put their names as their daughter's legal parents on her birth certificate.

Des Moines couple Melissa and Heather Gartner were granted the right to have both of their names on their 2-year-old daughter's birth certificate last month. Judge Eliza Ovrom did not declare it a universal right for all Iowa same-sex couples, but she said the state failed to make the provisions after the Iowa Supreme Court ruled to establish marriage equality.

Health department spokeswoman Polly Carver-Kimm told The Des Moines Register that the department would appeal the decision because it involves married lesbian mothers who conceived the child with the help of an anonymous sperm donor. She also said the department will seek guidance from the state Supreme Court on applying paternity language to same-sex marriages.

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