Brandenburg, executive director of Justice at Stake, notes that organizers behind the campaign against the Iowa justices have "vowed to impeach and remove the court's four remaining justices, who weren't up for election in November."
The debate may have started over same-sex marriage, but the specter of impeachment has transformed it into an assault on constitutional government. Impeaching judges to redress political grievances would trigger a political circus that would paralyze government and undermine courts. Witch hunts against judges could also threaten state economies by driving out investments that create jobs, since businesses count on stable courts to settle disputes.
But there are deeper reasons why Iowans and Americans elsewhere need to catch their breath and avoid waging war on the courts.
Impeachments of judges were not designed as a tool for this kind of political disagreement, and the reason is essential to our democracy. If courts can't make tough calls, they won't be able to uphold the Constitution and protect our rights.