Idaho governor wants to file more arguments in same-sex marriage case

Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter (R-Idaho) KIMBERLEE KRUESI [ap]

BOISE, Idaho — Idaho’s governor wants to file additional arguments in his attempt to have 11 judges from a San Francisco-based appeals court review a smaller panel’s ruling that overturned the state’s gay marriage ban.

Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter (R-Idaho)

Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter (R-Idaho)

Attorneys on behalf of Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter argued in a motion filed Wednesday with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that another reply is needed because separate federal courts have since upheld same-sex marriage bans in other states.

They added that the analysis in that case by experts defending marriage as between one man and one woman should be included because the Idaho plaintiffs claim fears of redefining marriage are unsubstantiated. Four lesbian couples filed the original Idaho lawsuit nearly a year ago.

“More than two dozen scholars of the institution of marriage have filed an amicus brief in the Fifth Circuit, presenting a gold mine of scholarship regarding the practical, real-world impact of redefining marriage,” according to the motion.

A three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit court overturned Idaho’s ban in mid-October. Gay marriage is now legal in 34 other states, with Montana being the most recent state to have its ban struck down.

“Removing the man-woman definition threatens serious harm to the institution of marriage, and, thus, to the children of heterosexual couples,” Otter’s attorneys wrote.

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The attorneys are requesting a speedy answer in case the U.S. Supreme Court decides to review another federal court’s decision to uphold gay marriage bans in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee.

Otter, who just won a rare third term as Idaho’s governor, has consistently vowed to fight to maintain the state’s 2006 constitutional amendment banning not only same-sex marriage but civil unions and domestic partnerships.

Most recently, he spent most of his re-election victory speech reiterating his efforts to ban gay marriage in Idaho even if it’s legalized in every other state.

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