A U.S. judge ruled Idaho's ban on gay marriage unconstitutional on Tuesday, allowing gay and lesbian couples in the state to marry as soon as Friday, according to the Associated Press.

Magistrate Judge Candy Dale wrote in a 57-page decision that Idaho's ban denies gay and lesbian citizens their fundamental right to marry and relegates them to a "stigmatized, second-class status."

"Idaho’s Marriage Laws withhold from them a profound and personal choice, one that most can take for granted." the judge wrote.

Dale said the state must issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples starting at 9 a.m. Friday.

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter (R) intends to appeal the ruling, meaning an appellate court could still put the weddings on hold, the AP reported.

"Today's decision, while disappointing, is a small setback in a long-term battle that will end at the U.S. Supreme Court," Otter said in a statement. "I am firmly committed to upholding the will of the people and defending our Constitution."

Earlier Tuesday, Otter filed a preemptive motion asking for an immediate stay if Dale ruled against the gay marriage ban.