Anthony Kennedy Halts Gay Marriage In Idaho, Nevada

Justice Anthony Kennedy issued an order to halt same-sex marriage in Idaho — and apparently also Nevada — on Wednesday after the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the states’ bans one day earlier.

Kennedy, who has jurisdiction over emergency appeals to rulings at the 9th Circuit, ordered that the lawyers for the same-sex couples suing to ax the ban respond to Idaho’s appeal by Thursday, Oct. 9 by 5 p.m.

Although Idaho asked for the injunction, Kennedy’s order also halts the 9th Circuit ruling against Nevada’s gay marriage ban — the two cases were consolidated.

The move comes after the Supreme Court declined on Monday to hear seven cases about the constitutionality of same-sex marriage bans, instead letting several lower court rulings against them take effect.

Kennedy’s move on Wednesday doesn’t necessarily mean the Court has had a change of heart and decided to review the issue. It’s possible he’s merely letting the process play out by giving Idaho a chance to appeal to the Supreme Court, and the gay couples a chance to respond, before the justices decide whether to take the case.

In the Idaho case, a lower court had knocked down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, and the 9th Circuit affirmed the ruling. In the Nevada case, a lower court had upheld the ban on same-sex marriage in 2012 (before the Supreme Court’s Windsor v. U.S. decision), and the 9th Circuit reversed it. The 9th Circuit ruling Tuesday paved the way for the bans to be lifted in Idaho and Nevada, but Kennedy’s order on Wednesday halts the 9th Circuit ruling in both states.

Kennedy Order – Idaho gay marriage

This article has been updated.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Latest Dc
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: