Nevada Hub

Same-Sex Marriage Once Again On Hold In Nevada, 9th Circuit Rescinds Mandate In Idaho


After Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy issued an order earlier today stating that his stay of the 9th Circuit's ruling yesterday only applies to Idaho and not to Nevada, it seemed that same-sex couples, who were originally slated to be able to get married today starting at 2 P.M., would once again have the opportunity to marry. However, in a series of tweets sent out by Clark County (which encompasses Las Vegas), it appears that same-sex marriage is once again delayed in the Silver State:

The issuance of #marriagelicenses to same-sex couples is on hold due to pending motions in the courts #Vegas #9thCircuit...The #9thCircuit is currently considering whether to recall the mandate to the District Court requiring an injunction...#Vegas #samesexmarriage...Our #MarriageLicenseBureau had expected to begin accepting marriage license applications from same-sex couples today at 2 p.m. #Vegas...It is unclear at this time when we will be able to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples #Vegas #9thCircuit

As mentioned in the above tweets, the 9th Circuit is also considering whether to recall its mandate issued yesterday that same-sex marriages must begin in Nevada immediately following its ruling striking down the state's same-sex marriage ban. The court has, however, already rescinded its mandate as it applies to Idaho. BuzzFeed's Chris Geidner reports:

Subsequent to the second order from Justice Anthony Kennedy, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals recalled the mandate in the Idaho marriage case, per an order it filed Wednesday afternoon.

Additionally, regarding the Coalition for the Protection of Marriage’s request before the 9th Circuit asking it to recall its mandate in the Nevada marriage case, the court called for responses to that request by 5 p.m. PT Thursday. 

Las Vegas Tourism Authority Celebrates 9th Circuit Decision: 'Vegas Just Got More Fabulous' - PHOTO


No doubt posted in response to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals' ruling yesterday striking down same-sex marriage bans in both Nevada and Idaho, the Las vegas Convention and Tourism Authority took to their Facebook page to celebrate the expansion of equality. The group posted the above photo of the iconic "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas" sign, modified with a hint of rainbow and captioned with, "Vegas just got more fabulous."

Now that marriage equality seems to be back on in the Silver State, Las Vegas does seem to be looking a little more fabulous after all. 

SCOTUS Justice Anthony Kennedy Lifts Stay On Same-Sex Marriage In Nevada


Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy has issued a second order today ending his previously issued stay only as it applies to Nevada. The stay on the 9th Circuit's ruling will remain in effect for Idaho. BuzzFeed reports, "Justice Anthony Kennedy ended the stay as to the Nevada marriage case, likely clearing the path for same-sex couples to be able to marry there soon."


Gay Weddings Halted In Idaho And Nevada Following SCOTUS Justice Anthony Kennedy's Stay Of 9th Circuit Ruling: VIDEO


While same-sex couples were set to be able to begin marrying today in Nevada, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy's stay of the 9th Circuit Court's ruling striking down gay marriage bans in Nevada and Idaho has effectively blocked same-sex couples in both states from saying "I do." 

Justice Kennedy's stay came after an emergency motion filed by Idaho state officials that requested a recall of the mandate from the 9th Circuit that made its ruling effective immediately.

The Star Tribune reports:

In Las Vegas, the self-proclaimed marriage capital of the world, the Marriage License Bureau had expected big crowds seeking gender-neutral marriage licenses starting at 2 p.m. local time. But Clark County Clerk Diane Alba told The Associated Press those plans were on hold.

"It looks pretty clear that we're not going to issue licenses this afternoon," she said.

Amber Beierle, one of the eight women who sued Idaho over its gay marriage ban, had hoped to marry her partner, Rachael Robertson, on Wednesday.

"We were past the metal detectors, we were just a few feet away from the clerk, and then our attorney was handed a one-page document," Beierle said. "Apparently it was Justice Kennedy telling us no."

Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter said he was glad Kennedy acted quickly.

"I'm pleased that Justice Kennedy has given us the opportunity to make our case in a way that helps avoid the confusion some other states have faced," Otter said. "I intend to be faithful to my oath of office and keep working to protect the Idaho Constitution and the mandate of Idaho voters in support of traditional marriage."

The delay could last just a few days. Kennedy's order requested a response from the plaintiffs involved in Idaho's gay marriage lawsuit by the end of Thursday.

The entire Supreme Court would need to weigh in to extend the stay beyond a couple of days. 

Watch a news report from Idaho on the stay and the disappointed couples, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Weddings Halted In Idaho And Nevada Following SCOTUS Justice Anthony Kennedy's Stay Of 9th Circuit Ruling: VIDEO" »

Nevada Clerks To Begin Issuing Same-Sex Marriage Licenses Today: VIDEO


Following yesterday's ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals striking down same-sex marriage bans in Idaho and Nevada, the clerk for Clark County in Nevada announced that same-sex couples will be able to begin seeking marriage licenses starting today at 2 P.M. local time. Clark County encompasses Las Vegas within its boundaries. The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports:

Clark County Clerk Diana Alba said the Marriage Bureau will start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples at 2 p.m. today, according to county spokesman Erik Pappa.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals expedited the date when its decision to void Nevada’s same-sex marriage ban will take effect, he said.

The Marriage Bureau is at 201 E. Clark Ave., on the first floor of the Regional Justice Center in downtown Las Vegas.

Meanwhile, the 9th Circuit, which promised to issue its mandate "forthwith", did just that, issuing an order that declared its ruling shall take effect immediately:

The judgment of this Court, entered October 07, 2014, takes effect this date. This constitutes the formal mandate of this Court issued pursuant to Rule 41(a) of the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure.

SandovalNevada Governor Brian Sandoval--who previously stated that he believes marriage is between one man and one woman but also said he would respect a decision from the courts that contradicted his personal beliefs--issued a statement of support for the 9th Circuit's decision:

“The ruling today confirmed my previous position that the State’s arguments against same sex marriage are no longer defensible in court. The SmithKline decision in February changed the legal standard which is why we originally withdrew our appeal. I respect the decision of the Court,” said Governor Brian Sandoval.

Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, urged local clerks to work with the appropriate district attorneys to determine whether to start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples:

“We are encouraged by the decision of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. However, although the Ninth Circuit has filed its decision in the case, it has not yet issued its mandate. The parties have 14 days to seek reconsideration or seek a stay to file an appeal with the United State Supreme Court. County clerks should work with their respective district attorneys on the appropriate course of action."

The court's mandate had not been issued at the time of both Sandoval and Cortez Masto's statements.

Watch a video of equality advocates celebrating yesterday's ruling and read the mandate issued by the 9th Circuit, AFTER THE JUMP...


Continue reading "Nevada Clerks To Begin Issuing Same-Sex Marriage Licenses Today: VIDEO" »

9th Circuit Strikes Down Same-Sex Marriage Bans In Idaho, Nevada: READ

Coming on the heels of yesterday's decision by the U.S. Supreme Court not to take up any of the 7 petitions on same-sex marriage it was considering, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals today struck down bans on same-sex marriage in Idaho and Nevada.

The Washington Blade reports:9

In two rulings on Tuesday, a three-judge panel on the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against the bans on same-sex marriage in Idaho and Nevada. Writing for the court, U.S. Circuit Judge Reinhardt says judges found the law were unconstitutional by subjecting them to heightened scrutiny.

“We hold that the Idaho and Nevada laws at issue violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment because they deny lesbians and gays who wish to marry persons of the same sex a right they afford to individuals who wish to marry persons of the opposite sex, and do not satisfy the heightened scrutiny standard we adopted in SmithKline,” Reinhardt writes.

The Ninth Circuit decision affirms a lower district court ruling against Idaho’s ban on same-sex marriage, but it also reverses a court rulings affirming the ban on same-sex marriage in Nevada that was handed down in 2012 before the Supreme Court decision against the Defense of Marriage Act.

Read the decision, AFTER THE JUMP...

Back in September, our legal editor Ari Ezra Waldman noted that the judges were highly skeptical of the anti-equality arguments, and predicted this unanimous decision.

Wrote Waldman:

Three progressive judges, though more muted in their questioning than Judge Posner was at the Seventh Circuit, were no less skeptical of the homophobic, ahistorical, misleading, misdirected arguments against allowing gays to marry. The hearing was a testament to how far we have come since the last time marriage equality was before Judge Reinhardt. The 2 to 1 decision in the Prop 8 case was an exercise in caution, an attempt to give the Supreme Court a way to support marriage equality without jumping ahead of too much of country. But at that time, we didn't have Windsor, we didn't have several other appellate courts declare bans unconstitutional, and we didn't have an emerging consensus written down in appellate and district court opinions. At that time, we had only a handful of marriage equality states; today, we have 19 states and the District of Columbia with equal marriage, covering more than 44 percent of the population. Today's hearing will result in an opinion with none of the hedges and narrowings of Perry. It will likely be unanimous and another sign that this debate is nearing its end.

Stay tuned for more updates on this breaking story.

Continue reading "9th Circuit Strikes Down Same-Sex Marriage Bans In Idaho, Nevada: READ" »


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