Idaho has voted to ban same-sex marriage and will issue a license next week to people who want to wed in the state.
The state’s marriage amendment will become law on January 1.
Read more about marriage in Idaho.
Idaho State Senator Kevin Johnson, a Republican, sponsored the marriage amendment.
“We are all in favor of marriage being recognized as a fundamental right for all Idahoans.
This amendment recognizes that marriage is a union between a man and a woman, that its purpose is to produce offspring, and that its foundation is God’s purpose for humanity,” Johnson said in a statement.”
As a Christian, I support and will work with my colleagues in the legislature to pass a constitutional amendment that acknowledges the inherent dignity of all persons, regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, gender identity or sexual orientation,” he said.
Same-sex couples in Idaho have a right to marry, but they cannot get married unless they obtain a license from the state clerk.
The Idaho State Bar Association, which represents lawyers, said it has received nearly 1,500 applications to marry in the past two years.
Idaho has become the first state to ban marriage equality since the Supreme Court struck down a key part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act in 2013.
In the court ruling, the court said states may not ban same sex marriage.
The court also overturned the Defense of Dependent Children Act, which gave federal authorities the power to intervene in state child custody decisions.
The decision has been a blow to states that had sought to limit federal courts’ ability to enforce federal immigration laws.
While the amendment would be legal, it will be extremely challenging to get approved, said John Burris, a law professor at Boise State University.
The law would likely require a three-fifths majority vote in the Idaho Senate, and the House would have to approve it by a simple majority.
Idaho has had marriage licenses since 1996.
The issue has gained national attention in recent months after two Indiana women were married in Washington state in June.
The first woman, Jennifer Krasner, was a minor and the second, a 19-year-old, was married under the state’s same-day marriage law.