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.
Judge Stephen Reinhardt wrote the majority opinion. Judges Marsha Berzon and Ronald Gould agreed, so the panel was unanimous in rendering this decision. The full Ninth Circuit opinion is now up. And like that, marriage equality is coming to Nevada! Oh, and it's coming to Idaho, too!
Actually, this is no suprise. Back in September, the Ninth Circuit judges were highly skeptical of the H8ers' whines and screams. H8ers are going to hate... But the Ninth Circuit panel wanted none of it.
Now keep in mind that this decision will not be appealed by the State of Nevada. And since the US Supreme Court just turned down seven cases appealing lower court pro-marriage rulings, it's probably a good idea for our world famous wedding chapels to prepare for the onslaught of wedding requests that's about to begin any day now.
Moments ago, Reps. Dina Titus (D-Paradise) & Steven Horsford (D-North Las Vegas) tweeted their congratulations. We're still awaiting word from Cresent Hardy (R-"Segregation Laws"), Adam Laxalt (R-"Political Issues"), & Barbara Cegavske (R-License to Discriminate). And we have a feeling we'll see far more reactions from elected officials across the state as the news sets in.