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Court Request Delays Marriages For All But A Few Gay Couples In Idaho

Laura Flowers

Same-sex couples in Idaho are awaiting one more court decision Monday on the state's on-again, off-again gay marriage ban.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals agreed to take additional arguments from the state's Republican governor Monday before putting gay marriage into effect in Idaho.

The request for the filings came late Friday after several hours of confusion across two time zones in Idaho. In Latah County, the clerk began issuing marriage licenses at around 4 p.m.

Tabitha Simmons and her partner of 24 years were the first in line.

“It took a little while for the first one because they had to experiment with the new form,” she said. “But as soon as we were issued the license, we went outside for a quick, fairly traditional civil ceremony on the west side of the courthouse. Got our witnesses to sign and turned it right back in so it would be registered that same day.”

Simmons said she hopes the additional back and forth at the 9th Circuit is just procedural and doesn’t affect her marriage. The court already ruled last week that Idaho's voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.

One couple in Twin Falls received a marriage license Wednesday before the governor sought intervention at the Supreme Court.

The 9th Circuit has given the governor has until 1 p.m. MST Monday to make his case for further delaying same-sex marriage.

Attorneys for the couples challenging Idaho's ban have until 6 p.m. MST to respond to the governor's brief.