Idaho Governor Butch Otter, a
Republican, pledged Thursday to continue fighting to reverse the
federal ruling that struck down Idaho's ban on gay marriage.
Idaho began issuing marriage licenses
to gay and lesbian couples on Wednesday, October 15, eight days after
a 3-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San
Francisco declared the state's ban unconstitutional.
After the Supreme court lifted a
temporary stay on the court's ruling, Otter said the state “now
should proceed with civility and in an orderly manner to comply with
any forthcoming order from the 9th Circuit,” but has
since reversed course and asked the Ninth Circuit for an en banc
According to The
Spokesman-Review, the state has spent $90,000 on the case.
a gubernatorial debate, Otter said he was “not ready to
surrender to a few folks in black robes.”
“I'm not ready to surrender the will
of the people in the state of Idaho, as they expressed in 2006 in an
overwhelming majority,” he said.
Otter insisted that states, not the
federal government, should decide marriage laws.
Democratic gubernatorial nominee A. J.
Balukoff criticized Otter's position.
“At this point, the ship has sailed,”
Balukoff said. “You're not going to win that battle in federal
court. You might as well start arguing about interracial marriage.”
When asked if he would sign a bill
banning discrimination based on sexual orientation in the areas of
housing, employment and education, Otter answered, “Yes. If that
bill were to pass, yes.”