Idaho Gov. Butch Otter is asking the 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to send Idaho’s same-sex marriage case directly to a full, 11-judge panel of the court, rather than the usual three-judge panel.
“Because the marriage issue is so passionately contested and so divisive among the citizenry, the perception of the legitimacy of this court’s resolution of it must be of paramount concern,” attorneys for the governor argue in their motion. “A decision by an 11-judge panel stands far higher and stronger than does a decision by a three-judge panel, just as a decision by a three-judge panel stands far higher and stronger than does a decision by a single judge.”
U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy Dale last month overturned Idaho’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, saying it violated the U.S. Constitution’s guarantees of equal protection and due process; four Idaho couples had sued, saying their constitutional rights were violated by the state not allowing them to marry or not recognizing their legal marriages from other states. Betsy Russell, SR