One More Ruling In Favor of Same-Sex Marriage, As Idaho Prepares to Fight Its Own Battle


Yes, Wednesday's ruling from a federal appeals court is pushing the issue of same-sex marriage to the U.S. Supreme Court; and yes, Idaho is edging closer to its own appeals court battle, which will play out early September in San Francisco before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

In fact, with very little fanfare or media coverage, Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter's legal team submitted their latest filings to the court one week ago today.

"The governor and the Idaho attorney general have to file their general brief to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals by Thursday, June 19. And our response to that brief on behalf of the plaintiffs is due to the court by Friday, July 18," said Boise attorney Deborah Ferguson, defending four Idaho couples in their challenge of Idaho's ban on same-sex marriage. "Then, our oral arguments will take place before what we expect to be a three-judge 9th Circuit panel during the week of Sept. 8."

Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the 10th Circuit ruled that Utah's similar ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional, prompting that state's attorney general to say that he was anxious to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. There are currently 12 states in varying states of argument or appeal regarding same-sex marriage, while 19 other states already allow same-sex marriage.

And if Idaho's case also ends up before the nation's highest court, that doesn't intimidate Ferguson one bit. A visitor to her downtown Boise law office might want to take note of a rather impressive framed certificate on her wall; it includes the image of a very familiar marble building in Washington, D.C.

"Yes, that's a certificate to argue before the United States Supreme Court," Ferguson told BW. "So, we would be more than ready."