In a positive development, a federal magistrate judge on Wednesday turned down the request from Idaho’s governor to put same-sex weddings on hold. The development has given Uthans who are fighting against the ban on gay marriages a ray of hope.
U.S. District Magistrate Judge Candy Dale wrote that the appeal is unlikely to succeed so there’s no reason to keep the state from granting marriage licenses to gay couples starting Friday.
While Utah awaits for a ruling on homosexual marriage ban, other states are heading to court for the same fight.
So far, 18 states has allowed same sex marriage. With this development, Idaho has become the 19th state.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy Wagahoff Dale struck down Idaho’s ban on gay marriage, saying it is unconstitutional.
“Idaho’s marriage laws deny its gay and lesbian citizens the fundamental right to marry and relegate their families to a stigmatized, second-class status without sufficient reason for doing so. “These laws do not withstand any applicable level of constitutional scrutiny,” Dale wrote.
The order will come into effect from Friday morning at 9 am.
A proponent of same-sex marriage Nicole Christensen of Utah Unites for Marriage said, “Arkansas, Michigan, Utah and now Idaho are getting the freedom to marry for gay lesbian citizens and it’s truly a historic time to be alive.”
The state and federal courts across the United States is witnessing a legal debate on same-sex marriage ban.
As Utahns awaits verdict on the lawsuit challenging gay marriage ban, Christensen says, the recent rulings are a positive indicator for what could happen in Utah.
“As we go into the 10th Circuit ruling that is going to happen any day now I think the momentum is just starting to build even stronger. And it absolutely has a profound impact. And the ruling today, it feels great,” Christensen said.
But advocates for traditional marriage in Utah feel the rulings are not representing the opinion of the majority of state voters.
“It’s disappointing that the court would make a ruling that is so fundamentally at odds with our legal standards,” said Bill Duncan, director of the Center for Family and Society at the Sutherland Institute.