Gay Marriage

Samantha Wright/BSPR

Republican gubernatorial candidate Tommy Ahlquist has removed language from his campaign website promising to fight to protect Idaho's right to define marriage.

Ahlquist is the only gubernatorial candidate whose website includes a resolution to protect the "sanctity of marriage."

Idaho Representative Steve Hartgen / Facebook

The Idaho House Revenue and Taxation Committee voted Tuesday to bring the state's tax code in line with federal rules, despite facing objections from two lawmakers who argued the state should not be recognizing same-sex marriages.

Ada County Statehouse Capitol Building Great Seal of Idaho
Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho lawmakers have sent a tax conformity bill back to the drawing board because it would have removed an unenforceable rule banning joint returns from same-sex couples.

telephone, buttons, hotline
Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

October 15 marked the one year anniversary of the legalization of same-sex marriage in Idaho. KBSX recently shared an interview with two Boise women who'd sued the state over the issue. Rachel and Amber Beierle talked about how their lives had changed since the decision. Since then, we've asked listeners to call in and offer their thoughts on the issue. 

Here is a sample of those responses. The comments have been edited for brevity only. 

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

 Thursday marks one year since same-sex marriage became legal in Idaho. That means it’s also the one year wedding anniversary for Rachael and Amber Beierle. The Beierlies are one of four couples who sued to overturn Idaho’s ban on gay marriage. We heard from them several times over the course of their lawsuit.

This week, our Adam Cotterell checked in with the couple to see how their lives have changed. The biggest difference, Amber says, is a third member in their family...who was also there for our interview. Hear all three Beierlies by clicking play.

Gay marriage, couples, lawsuit
Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

It's been one year since same-sex marriage has been legal in Idaho. While supporters celebrated the change, critics said it would erode traditional marriage values in the state.

We're curious - has the new rule changed your life? If so, how?

We've set up a hotline where you can offer your thoughts. The number is 208-426-3671. We ask that you keep your comments to a minute or less. Please note: some submissions may be used by KBSX in an on-air segment or as podcast material.

Thank you for participating! We look forward to hearing from you.

Butch Otter
Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho had to dip into its bank account Monday to pay for three lawsuits the state has recently lost. The price tag is more than $800,000 dollars.

Gay marriage, couples, lawsuit
Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

The Supreme Court has declared that same-sex couples have a right to marry anywhere in the United States.

Gay and lesbian couples already can marry in 36 states and the District of Columbia. The court's ruling on Friday means the remaining 14 states, in the South and Midwest, will have to stop enforcing their bans on same-sex marriage.

The outcome is the culmination of two decades of Supreme Court litigation over marriage, and gay rights generally.

Gay marriage, couples, lawsuit
Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Six same-sex couples in northern Idaho who received marriage licenses before state officials say a federal court made such unions legal are being given a unique state-approved opportunity for a do-over.

Northern Idaho officials are offering a marriage license application that has the unusual option of selecting already married.

The application available only to the six same-sex couples in Latah County who married in early October is intended to allow them to get a new application without denying they're already married.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Tuesday about whether states should be allowed to ban same-sex marriage. While Idaho is not directly involved in this case, whatever the court decides will impact the law here.

The idea that the Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage is a good thing for Republicans sounds counterintuitive — after all, the GOP is the party of traditional marriage.

But here's why it might actually be a good thing for the party:

1. Public opinion is changing — at lightning speed.

There's never been a social issue in America on which public attitudes reached a tipping point so quickly.

People have been lining up outside the U.S. Supreme Court for days hoping that they will be among the lucky ones to get a seat for Tuesday's historic arguments on gay marriage.

As of now, gay marriage is legal in 36 states. By the end of this Supreme Court term, either same-sex couples will be able to wed in all 50 states, or gay marriage bans may be reinstituted in many of the states where they've previously been struck down.

An Idaho Republican lawmaker's political website has been snapped up by a group claiming to be gay rights activists, decorated with rainbows and replaced with text requesting that the legislature meet with same-sex marriage supporters.

State Rep. Paul Shepherd from Riggins is backing a non-binding resolution urging Congress to impeach federal judges who violate the U.S. Constitution. Shepherd contends that recent court rulings overturning state bans on same-sex marriages violate the Constitution.

Idaho lawmakers unhappy with the legalization of gay marriage in the state are calling on Congress to do something about “activist judges.”

Alliance Defending Freedom

A judge in Benton County, Washington, has ruled that a flower shop in the Tri-Cities broke the law when it refused to serve a gay couple planning a wedding two years ago.

The judge said Barronelle Stutzman broke state anti-discrimination and consumer protection laws. In 2013, she told Robert Ingersoll and Curt Freed she couldn't do the flower arrangements for their wedding because of her religious convictions against same-sex marriage.

Reuters

U.S. Census Bureau data analyzed by Reuters show which American counties have the largest share of same-sex households. Based on the 2010 Census, north Idaho's Benewah County has more same-sex households per 1,000 residents than any other Idaho county.

Benewah's 2010 population was 9,285. According to the 2014 Census estimate, total population has actually declined since then by 241 people.

Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

The legal team that successfully fought to overturn Idaho's ban on gay marriage has filed paperwork seeking an additional $300,000 in court costs.

Boise attorney and lead counsel Deborah Ferguson filed the three-page motion Thursday in federal court to cover legal expenses since late May.

A federal judge late last year awarded Ferguson and her team $400,000 for work through May.

Samantha Wright / Boise State Public Radio

If you’re in a same-sex marriage and you live in Idaho, filing state taxes just got a little simpler.

When the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals legalized gay marriage last year in Idaho, that law change also meant changes at the Idaho Tax Commission and for same-sex couples filing joint tax returns. Now, married same-sex couples will only have to fill out one federal form when they file their taxes, instead of the three that had to be filed under the old rules.

Updated at 5:04 p.m. ET

The U.S. Supreme Court will decide on gay marriage this term.

The justices said today they will review an appellate court's decision to uphold the ban on same-sex marriage in Ohio, Tennessee, Michigan and Kentucky. The four states are among 14 that ban same-sex marriage.

Butch Otter
Idaho Statesman

Idaho's Constitutional Defense Fund committee has approved the latest round of legal bills in Idaho's court fight over gay marriage.

The panel — made up of the governor, attorney general, House Speaker and President Pro Tem — unanimously voted to pay roughly $401,000 to the winning side's attorney fees and printing costs. Members then voted 3-1 to pay $55,000 for outside counsel to appeal Idaho's gay marriage case to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and U.S. Supreme Court.

Laura Flowers

Idaho's governor vowed in his State of the State address Monday to continue the legal fight against gay marriage.

Same-sex marriage has been legal in Idaho since October after a federal appeals court threw out the state’s voter-passed ban.

But Gov. Butch Otter said in his annual address he has a responsibility to defend Idaho's constitution.

Patrick McKay / Flickr

Idaho Governor C.L. "Butch" Otter has filed an appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court making good on his promise to take the fight against gay marriage to the highest court in the land.

Deborah Ferguson, gay marriage, lawyer
Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

A federal judge has ruled that Idaho must pay more than $400,000 to the lawyers who successfully fought to overturn the state's ban on gay marriage.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy Dale on Friday awarded an amount that is about 10 percent less than what the lawyers requested.

Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter and attorney Christopher Rich argued for an award of little more than $200,000. They said that the six lawyers working on the case took too much time and charged too much in hourly fees.

The lead attorney billed $400 an hour and recorded more than 600 hours.

A closely watched court case dealing with whether religious business-owners must provide services to gay couples is headed to oral arguments Friday in Kennewick, Washington.

Butch Otter
Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter says the U.S. Supreme Court should wait until it receives arguments from Idaho before deciding a case involving gay marriage in the United States.

In documents filed with the nation's highest court, lawyers for Otter said waiting for Idaho's case would help the Supreme Court resolve "the marriage-litigation wave in all respects."

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