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Idaho Readies For Same-Sex Couples' Marriages To Begin Wednesday

"We have done all we can through the courts for now to defend traditional marriage in Idaho," Governor Butch Otter says.

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Patrick Sweeney / Reuters

Courtney Yamada-Anderson and Melanie Yamada-Anderson pose for a photo as couples gather at the Ada County Courthouse to apply for same-sex marriage licenses in Boise, Idaho October 8, 2014.

WASHINGTON — Idaho's governor and attorney general acknowledged on Tuesday that marriage equality would be coming to the state on Wednesday morning.

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter, who unsuccessfully fought on Monday to stop same-sex couples from marrying during any further attempts to appeal this past week's appeals court ruling that the state's ban is unconstitutional, acknowledged that marriages will begin on Wednesday in a statement:

"The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has issued its mandate for enforcement of decisions overturning the Idaho Constitution's prohibition on same-sex marriage effective at 10 a.m. MDT, 9 a.m. PDT on Wednesday, October 15. I continue to believe that the federal courts are mistaken in abandoning the sanctity of traditional marriage and in undermining the will of Idaho voters and each state's right to define marriage. But we are civil society that respects the rule of law. We have done all we can through the courts for now to defend traditional marriage in Idaho."

The statement said nothing about whether Otter will seek further review of the ruling from the three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit, something lawyers for Otter have suggested in prior filings that he will do. A spokesman for Otter confirmed that the statement was only regarding the fact that marriages will start on Wednesday, adding, "We are saying nothing more than that."

Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden had acknowledged on Monday in a court filing that the state would not be able to meet the standards for halting the marriages during any appeal. On Tuesday, Wasden's spokesman, Todd Dvorak, told BuzzFeed News, "Attorney General [Wasden] currently has no plans for filing any legal challenge today or tomorrow."

Chris Geidner is the legal editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, DC. In 2014, Geidner won the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association award for journalist of the year.

Contact Chris Geidner at

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