It looks like there’s a possibility that a state amendment to ban gay marriage might be defeated — in the strongly conservative state of spuds. (

A conservative group working on a Constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage in Idaho may not have as much support as it thinks.

The Post Register has identified 12 state senators who at least partly oppose the amendment — enough to kill the effort in the Idaho Senate.

Some of the senators who oppose the amendment were willing to say so on record, the Idaho Falls newspaper reported. Others declined to go on the record, saying they want to see how the amendment is worded before making a final decision.

“I believe gay marriage is a wedge issue promoted by the far right to tear apart the Republican Party,” said Sen. John Goedde, R-Coeur d’Alene. “I don’t think this exercise is worth a hill of beans.”

The House is a different story. Last year, an amendment defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman easily passed the House and is expected to do so again.

And amendment supporters say they don’t expect any problems in the Senate, either.

“I believe we’ve got the 24 votes (in the Idaho Senate) needed to get the job done,” said Meridian Republican Gerry Sweet, who along with Nampa Republican Curt McKenzie is working with conservative groups from Idaho and around the country to make gay-marriage bans the law of the land.

But the two other members of Senate Republican leadership — Joe Stegner of Lewiston and Brad Little of Emmett — oppose the amendment.

Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding