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Politics & Government

Idaho Republicans Now Proposing Child Marriage Age Limit

James Dawson
Boise State Public Radio

Two Republican state lawmakers are working on a bill to set a minimum marriage age in Idaho after the House rejected a similar proposal from Democrats earlier this year.

The Post Register reports state Reps. Barbara Ehardt (R-Idaho Falls) and Bryan Zollinger (R-Idaho Falls) are teaming up on the legislation.

They haven’t yet decided on a minimum marriage age, but they’re considering somewhere between 14 and 16. Only their parents would need to approve of the marriage.

Right now, Idaho law allows anyone of any age to get married if they get their parents and a judge to sign off on it. They just parental permission if they’re 16 or older.

Ehardt and Zollinger told the newspaper they thought the failed bill this year would’ve yanked away parental rights, since a couple would still need a judge’s signature until they were 18.

From 2000 to 2010, Idaho had the highest per-capita rate of child marriages in the country, according to Unchained At Last, a group that wants to abolish child marriage in the U.S.

The next legislative session begins in January.

Follow James Dawson on Twitter @RadioDawson for more local news.

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