Serving up this steaming pile of
Celebrity Gossip
Gay Politics
Gay News
and Pointless Bitchery
Since 1995

New Mexico Issuing Marriage Licenses

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — Gay and lesbian couples flocked to southern New Mexico for a second day Thursday to take advantage of a surprise decision to issue same-sex marriage licenses. And most were tying the knot on the spot, making sure they got their long-awaited marriage certificates before any courts or state officials could interfere.

"We wanted a piece of paper that said, 'Yes, the 20 years have not been in vain,'" said Thom Hinks of Albuquerque.

Hinks said he and his partner, Richard Sunman, spent much of their three-hour drive discussing whether to get married immediately in Las Cruces on Thursday or use the license to have a better-planned ceremony somewhere else in the state.

The couple said they decided to do it right away, remembering that in 2004 another county clerk stopped issuing licenses shortly after granting several dozen of them.

"All it would take is for a judge to issue an edict and strike it down," said Hinks.

A legal challenge is expected. Republican Sen. William Sharer of Farmington said a lawsuit will be filed, potentially by the end of the week, seeking a court order to stop the clerk.

"It has to do with a county clerk cannot make law. That is the Legislature's job," said Sharer, who sponsored a constitutional amendment in 2011 to define marriage as between a man and woman.

He said more than two dozen GOP lawmakers have agreed to join the lawsuit. It likely will be filed with the state Supreme Court, but Sharer said lawyers were trying to decide the best legal strategy.

Neither Republican Gov. Susana Martinez nor Democratic Attorney General Gary King, who plans to run for her seat next year, indicated they planned to do anything to try to halt the practice as cases testing the legality of same-sex marriage work their way through the state Supreme Court.

The gay marriage issues pose political risks for candidates in New Mexico, which leans Democratic in statewide voting but has many moderate to conservative Democrats in rural areas.

"Issues like immigration, abortion and gay marriage, those are issues that sometimes statewide candidates want to keep away from. Just the fact that both Gary King and the governor haven't exactly come out gangbusters on this issue demonstrates that they recognize it's a double-edge sword that plays both ways," said Brian Sanderoff, an Albuquerque pollster.

Martinez has said she personally opposes same-sex marriage but believes that voters should decide whether to legalize gay marriage through a constitutional amendment. King's office has said that state law prohibits same-sex marriage but those restrictions are unconstitutional.

Pat Davis of ProgressNow New Mexico, a liberal advocacy group, said gay marriage may not become a big political issue if it's resolved by the state Supreme Court well before next year's elections.

Otherwise, the Democratic-controlled Legislature will face pressure to approve a constitutional amendment, which would put the issue on the November ballot and make it a high-profile topic for voters.

"And then I think all bets are off," Davis said "I think it does become an issue no matter what."

Meanwhile, the state Supreme Court issued a ruling Thursday that strengthened anti-discrimination protections for gays. The court said a commercial photography business violated a state law in refusing to take pictures of a lesbian couple's commitment ceremony. The court rejected arguments that the state's Human Rights Act violated the business owner's religious beliefs against same-sex marriage.

Lynn Ellins began issuing same-sex marriage licenses Wednesday after he said his review of state law allowed him to do so. By Thursday afternoon, more than 70 licenses had been issued.

Most of the couples were from New Mexico, Ellins said. But a few crossed state lines.

Monica Corral and Luz Saenz said they came from nearby El Paso, even though their marriage won't be legal in Texas.

They said they just wanted to make the lifelong commitment, and "hopefully I will live long enough to see it happen in Texas," said Saenz.

County and city officials around the country have taken it upon themselves in recent years to issue same-sex licenses, with one of the first and most highly publicized cases in San Francisco in 2004. The city issued the licenses for about a month before being ordered by courts to stop. The marriages were eventually invalidated. But gay marriage is now legal in that state.

Dona Ana County became the first county in New Mexico to actively issue same-sex licenses since a Sandoval County clerk issued 64 licenses to same-sex couples in 2004. Then-Attorney General Patricia Madrid soon declared the licenses were invalid and a court later ordered the clerk to stop. No judge nullified the licenses, however.

In 2010, a state district judge in Santa Fe ruled that a marriage license issued by the Sandoval County clerk to two women was valid and subject to divorce. The judge said the clerk may have been negligent or mistaken, but the licenses were "not void from the inception, but merely voidable." The judge didn't rule on whether gay marriage was legal in the state.

by Anonymousreply 5809/11/2013

Still going on or have they been stopped?

by Anonymousreply 208/23/2013

Wow, this is unprecedented!!

by Anonymousreply 308/23/2013

This will end well.

by Anonymousreply 408/23/2013

Cool.

Actually, it may indeed end well.

by Anonymousreply 508/23/2013

Looking GOOD in New Mexico - a second county has begun issuing licenses and first feedback coming in from the courts:

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The county clerk in the New Mexico state capital and the heart of this state's gay rights movement began issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples Friday, a court-ordered move that came just two days after a county clerk on the other end of the state decided on his own to recognize same-sex marriage.

The first couple to get a license in the state's third-largest county was Santa Fe County Commissioner Liz Stefanics and Linda Siegle, a lobbyist for Equality New Mexico, a gay rights group. Stefanics is a former Democratic state senator.

The couple walked into County Clerk Geraldine Salazar's office shortly after 1:30 p.m., and asked if they were still denying licenses to same-sex couples.

"Not today," Salazar said.

Second in line were the two men who filed the lawsuit that resulted in the court order directing the clerk to issue the licenses — Alexander Hanna and Yon Hudson.

Salazar also sent a staffer to the chemotherapy suite at Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center, so Jen Roper of Pojoaque, who is dying of brain cancer, could marry Angelique Neuman.

By mid-afternoon, more than half a dozen couples had trickled into the county courthouse, including Carolyn Dechaine and Kristina McKeown of Santa Fe, who heard the news on Facebook.

"You could feel the momentum building that this was coming," Dechaine said. "But we didn't know it would be today. When we woke up this morning, we were not thinking it was going to be such an eventful day."

The order late Thursday from District Judge Sarah Singleton represents the first time a New Mexico judge has ruled that gay and lesbian couples can be married, said state Rep. Brian Egolf, a lawyer representing Hanna and Hudson in the lawsuit.

Stefanics and Siegle were married later Friday afternoon in the Santa Fe County Courthouse. Hanna and Hudson said they were going to wait until they could arrange a ceremony involving family and friends.

Singleton's ruling ordered Salazar to grant the marriage licenses or appear in court Sept. 26 to tell her why that shouldn't happen.

Salazar said she had long wanted to give licenses to gay couples but felt her hands were tied legally.

In March, Santa Fe Mayor David Coss encouraged county clerks to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples. A month later, the Santa Fe City Council passed a resolution recognizing gay marriage as legal in New Mexico.

"I am a fervent supporter of same-sex marriage," she said. "... I have been frustrated recently wanting to issue licenses but being confronted with longstanding statutes that do not permit it."

Egolf said Friday the ruling could help speed a resolution of the gay marriage issue in the state.

"This will be the first time a court anywhere in New Mexico ... has ordered same-sex couples to be married," said Egolf, a Santa Fe Democrat who unsuccessfully pushed in the Legislature for a constitutional amendment to legalize gay marriage.

He and other activists are trying to get a lawsuit before the New Mexico Supreme Court to decide whether same-sex couples legally can be married in the state.

New Mexico law doesn't explicitly prohibit or authorize same-sex couples to be married. The attorney general's office has interpreted the law to prohibit gay marriage, but Attorney General Gary King also contends that the law violates constitutional guarantees of equal protection under the law.

More than a dozen other states do allow same-sex marriage.

Singleton, in her order, said that "reading a sex or sexual orientation requirement into the laws of New Mexico violates the state constitution, which mandates that 'equality of rights under law shall not be denied on account of the sex of any person.'"

The order comes as about 90 same-sex couples have received marriage licenses in southern New Mexico since Wednesday, when the Dona Ana County clerk in Las Cruces decided to start granting them.

Dona Ana Chief Deputy Clerk Mario Jimenez said some Texas couples are traveling to the border region to get married.

He said Jerrett Morris and Jeffrey Tingley were in town from Dallas visiting family when they decided to get their marriage license Friday at the Las Cruces courthouse.

Jimenez said another same-sex couple from Dallas is flying into the region later Friday to get married, and a couple from San Antonio is expected next week.

"They are traveling to change their lives," Jimenez said. "And more are coming."

by Anonymousreply 608/23/2013

Santa Fe County second county to start issuing licenses

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The county clerk in the state capital and the heart of this state's gay rights movement on Friday began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, a court-ordered move that came just two days after a county clerk in southern New Mexico decided on his own that recognize gay marriage.

Under orders from a judge overseeing a lawsuit by two Santa Fe men trying to get married, County Clerk Geraldine Salazar began issuing licenses to same-sex couples shortly after 1: 30 p.m.

The first same-sex couple to get a license in the state's third-largest county was Santa Fe County Commissioner Liz Stefanics and Linda Siegle, a lobbyist for Equality New Mexico, a gay rights group. Stefanics is a former Democratic state senator from Santa Fe.

Also receiving a license were the two men who filed the lawsuit that resulted in the court order directing the clerk to issue licenses — Alexander Hanna and Yon Hudson.

STORY: Marriage license denied for N.C. same-sex couple

The order late Thursday from District Judge Sarah Singleton in their suit represents the first time a New Mexico judge has ruled that gay and lesbian couples can be married, said state Rep. Brian Egolf, a lawyer representing the couple.

Singleton said Santa Fe County Clerk Geraldine Salazar must grant the marriage licenses or appear in court Sept. 26 to tell her why that shouldn't happen. Salazar did not immediately return a telephone call from The Associated Press.

Egolf said Friday the ruling could help speed a resolution of the gay marriage issue in the state.

"This will be the first time a court anywhere in New Mexico … has ordered same-sex couples to be married," said Egolf, a Santa Fe Democrat who unsuccessfully pushed in the Legislature for a constitutional amendment to legalize gay marriage.

He and other activists are trying to get a lawsuit before the state Supreme Court to decide whether same-sex couples legally can be married in New Mexico.

New Mexico law doesn't explicitly prohibit or authorize same-sex couples to be married. The attorney general's office has interpreted the law to prohibit gay marriage, but Attorney General Gary King also contends the law violates constitutional guarantees of equal protection under the law.

Singleton, in her order, said that "reading a sex or sexual orientation requirement into the laws of New Mexico violates the state constitution, which mandates that 'equality of rights under law shall not be denied on account of the sex of any person.'"

The order comes as about 90 same-sex couples have received marriage licenses in southern New Mexico since Wednesday, when the Dona Ana County clerk in Las Cruces decided to start granting them.

A group of Republican legislators is planning to file a lawsuit to stop the clerk in Dona Ana County, which is the second largest county in the state.

Dona Ana Chief Deputy Clerk Mario Jimenez said Texas couples are traveling to the border region to get married.

He said Jerrett Morris and Jeffrey Tingley obtained their marriage license Friday. The pair just happened to be in town from Dallas visiting family when they decided to go to the courthouse in Las Cruces to get their license.

Jimenez said another same-sex couple from Dallas is flying into the region later Friday to get married, and a couple from San Antonio is expected next week.

"They are traveling to change their lives," Jimenez said. "And more are coming."

by Anonymousreply 708/23/2013

Good stuff.

by Anonymousreply 808/23/2013

Wow, R7. R6 here. Marry me in New Mexico!

by Anonymousreply 908/23/2013

The Santa Fe county clerk is going to be overwhelmed granting licenses.

by Anonymousreply 1008/23/2013

What has Republican Gov. Susannah Martinez said about this?

by Anonymousreply 1108/23/2013

Go, New Mexico!!

by Anonymousreply 1208/23/2013

For R11:

Neither Republican Gov. Susana Martinez nor Democratic Attorney General Gary King, who plans to run for her seat next year, indicated they planned to do anything to try to halt the practice as cases testing the legality of same-sex marriage work their way through the state Supreme Court.

by Anonymousreply 1308/23/2013

Martinez has said nothing. I think in past, she has said she doesn't believe in same sex marriage but it's up to the voters.

by Anonymousreply 1408/23/2013

With gay marriage in NM, and her expanding Medicaid under the ACA, Martinez can forget about being VP on the Republican ticket in 2016.

by Anonymousreply 1508/23/2013

I'm happy for all the gay cowboys in West Texas who can now drive to NM in their pickups and get married.

by Anonymousreply 1608/23/2013

Wow! This is a nice surprise.

by Anonymousreply 1708/23/2013

Cowboy honeymoon

by Anonymousreply 1808/23/2013

Damn, that photo is hot!

by Anonymousreply 1908/23/2013

SANTA FE, New Mexico (Reuters) - Jubilant gay and lesbian couples crowded county offices in the artsy southwestern community of Santa Fe on Friday seeking marriage licenses after a judge ruled that it would be discriminatory to deny same-sex couples the right to wed.

The New Mexico decision ended a lawsuit filed by two men, Alex Hanna and Yon Hudson, after they were refused a marriage license by the clerk of Santa Fe County earlier this year.

"It is the first time that a judge in New Mexico has determined that the constitution and laws of New Mexico require marriage equality," said Brian Egolf, a lawyer and state legislator who represented Hanna and Hudson. "We're very excited for our clients."

Thirteen U.S. states and the District of Columbia allow same-sex marriage.

In her ruling, which was issued late Thursday, District Judge Sarah Singleton said there was nothing in New Mexico's law or constitution prohibiting same-sex marriage.

She ordered the Santa Fe county clerk, Geraldine Salazar, to begin issuing licenses to same-sex couples or appear in court to explain why she shouldn't have to.

On Friday, Salazar complied. She said she had always supported gay marriage, but feared that the licenses would be considered illegal.

"I am a fervent supporter of same-sex marriage in New Mexico and have always believed that the restrictive and antiquated statutes in our state must fall to the principles of equal protection embodied in our constitution," Salazar said in a statement Friday.

Couples began gathering in her office Friday afternoon, amid cheers, laughter, tears and hugs.

In 2004, the county clerk in Sandoval County, New Mexico, began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but stopped doing so after the state attorney general said gay marriage was not legal in New Mexico.

The case that prompted this week's ruling was one of several filed recently in New Mexico on the question of same-sex marriage. The state Supreme Court was initially asked to rule on them, but asked lower courts to handle them first.

Two women who sued in one of the other suits, filed by the American Civil Liberties Union, were also married on Friday with a license issued in Santa Fe by Salazar.

Jen Roper and Angelique Neuman were married in the Christus St. Vincent cancer center where Roper was undergoing treatment, the ACLU said in a press release.

"We are so very happy to be officially married after 21 years together," Roper said in a statement. "Now we just ask that the courts move quickly to ensure that our marriages are fully recognized and respected by the state."

A county clerk in southern New Mexico had already begun issuing licenses in advance of the ruling.

"Maybe I'm jumping the gun, but so be it," said Doña Ana County Clerk Lynn Ellins on Wednesday. "Equal protection should apply to everyone."

He told Reuters that the first same-sex couple to obtain a license said they had waited 31 years to wed.

by Anonymousreply 2008/24/2013

I wonder why only the two counties have been issuing licenses?

by Anonymousreply 2108/24/2013

This is a wonderful continuation of the path toward equality.

by Anonymousreply 2208/24/2013

Who is this Dona Ana, and why did she get a entire county named after her?

by Anonymousreply 2308/24/2013

Right, R22! This one kind of fell out of the sky with no one seeming to care much one way or the other.

by Anonymousreply 2408/24/2013

r23 She's Santa's sister.

by Anonymousreply 2508/24/2013

Doña Ana County was created 9 January 1852. It was named for a lady named, Doña Ana Robledo who in the 17th century gave money to many charities

by Anonymousreply 2608/24/2013

LOL, I live in Las Cruces. It's a small town with New Mexico State University anchored here. The marriage license started on Wednesday, it's not not even a "big" news here. The news media didn't make a huge fuss about it, I watched it on tv, the story didn't even take the top spot, they just reported it as happy couples getting license in the city hall. People here have more tolerance or simply don't care, the other day the newspaper had a poll on their website, the vast majority either support or have no opinion, only a small fraction against it.

by Anonymousreply 2708/24/2013

Jef and Jerrett are friends of mine!! I saw their Facebook post yesterday.

by Anonymousreply 2808/24/2013

R[27] I don't know what news media you've been watching but here in ALB, all the news outlets have opened their broadcast with at least two stories on it. From the 38 year couple who led the fight to the lady w/brain cancer who married her partner. Stories about people lining up and one county clerk (I think Santa fe) who stayed open till 7:30pm to accommodate everyone. It's been all the rage. In fact, I'm getting tired of hearing about it.

by Anonymousreply 2908/24/2013

I never get tired of hearing this type of good news.

by Anonymousreply 3008/24/2013

I notice R29 is posting from Alabama...one doubt one of the LAST states that will come through with gay marriage. Of course this is B-I-G horrifying news there.

by Anonymousreply 3108/24/2013

**NO doubt...

by Anonymousreply 3208/24/2013

R29 here is the link to our newspaper(we only have one here), good luck on finding "exciting" debates on the marriage license, it didn't even register the top 10 most viewed stories.

www.lcsun-news.com

by Anonymousreply 3308/24/2013

R31, I believe R29 means Albuquerque, NM but I don't think he is a native there either otherwise he would know we use ABQ for that city.

by Anonymousreply 3408/24/2013

Ah, that makes more sense. I stand corrected.

by Anonymousreply 3508/24/2013

Looks like you'll be able to marry in Albuquerque tomorrow morning.

This is pretty amazing.

by Anonymousreply 3608/26/2013

Oh, and here is that cunt Christine Butler's facebook page. She thinks the ruling violates her rights.

'I don't want to bring my children or go to places and see same-sex couples showing a lot of affection. ... That's against God's law,' Butler said."

Yes, she really thinks she has a constitutional right to not see things she thinks violates "God's Law".

I wanna smack that bitch.

by Anonymousreply 3708/26/2013

Awesome news with a second, more direct, affirmative decision from a judge:

State District Judge Alan Malott on Monday ruled New Mexico's constitution prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, ordering Bernalillo County to join the state's other two population centers in recognizing the unions.

The decision comes on the heels of an order last week from a judge in Santa Fe that directed the county clerk there to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. That followed a decision by the clerk in the southern New Mexico county of Dona Ana to recognize same-sex couples.

But Malott's ruling was seen as more sweeping than the temporary Santa Fe order because he directly declared that gay marriage was legal.

by Anonymousreply 3808/27/2013

Great for New Mexico but I really wish it was Arizona where I live. I will be tying the know soon mainly for immigration reasons but may have to relocate in order to get all of the perks of being married.

by Anonymousreply 3908/27/2013

R39, wouldn't you prefer living in NM anyway?

by Anonymousreply 4008/27/2013

[quote]State District Judge Alan Malott on Monday ruled New Mexico's constitution prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, ordering Bernalillo County to join the state's other two population centers in recognizing the unions.

This keeps getting better and better. Maggie Gallagher's head must be exploding. The obese hatemonger can barely keep up with her efforts to stop marriage equality.

by Anonymousreply 4108/27/2013

2 more counties issuing marriage licenses in New Mexico. Now up to 5 counties. More than 50% of New Mexicans now have marriage equality.

by Anonymousreply 4208/27/2013

Wonderful news!

by Anonymousreply 4308/27/2013

Wonderful

by Anonymousreply 4408/27/2013

...any other states with things like this in the works?

by Anonymousreply 4508/27/2013

New Mexico was truly unique, R45, where there was really NOTHING that prevented gay marriage in the first place. The marriage laws were gender neutral - only the forms in the registrar's offices reflected "bride" and "groom." I think this is why is all has fallen apart so easily now with little opposition since being challenged. Any sane person would come to the same conclusion. I am afraid this is the only State out there that is this unique and am surprised it took this long in the first place.

by Anonymousreply 4608/27/2013

Taos County is next.

Taos County to begin issuing same-sex licenses Taos District Judge Jeff McElroy said the county clerk will likely not contest the decision in court and will begin issuing same sex marriage licenses soon.

by Anonymousreply 4708/27/2013

And New Mexico would benefit greatly if the gays would just stay there to live, because gays don't breed but adopt, gays are not into crime in general, and gays tend to beautify their surroundings.

So, for a state with too many unwanted children, a large gang population, and a dusty and littered landscape I say "Smart thinking, New Mexico."

by Anonymousreply 4808/27/2013

A 7th county will begin issuing marriage licenses next week:

The legal fight over gay marriage in New Mexico broadened Tuesday as a seventh county announced plans to start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Grant County Clerk Robert Zamarripa said his office will comply with a judge's ruling issued Tuesday and will begin providing the licenses next week.

Also:

Interesting article in the NY Times at the link below discussing the difficulty either side is having in the fight for or against gay marriage in New Mexico.

by Anonymousreply 4909/03/2013

There are a lot of marriage equality groups working in other states. They're working to get enough votes in New Jersey to override the expected veto from the morbidly obese governor.

Look for Hawaii to soon have marriage equality.

by Anonymousreply 5009/03/2013

An eighth county now issuing marriage licenses:

LOS ALAMOS, N.M. — A northern New Mexico county became the eighth in the state on Wednesday to clear the way for same-sex couples to be married.

The Los Alamos County clerk's office issued a marriage license to a lesbian couple shortly after a state district judge upheld a decision requiring that to happen.

Janet Newton and Maria Thibodeau were denied a license last week and filed a lawsuit that led to a ruling by District Court Judge Sheri Raphaelson that same-sex couples are entitled to be married in New Mexico.

Los Alamos County Clerk Sharon Stover went to court Wednesday to defend her decision to deny the couple a license, but the judge ruled against the clerk.

by Anonymousreply 5109/05/2013

Call for State Supreme Court to make the call filed by 33 Counties:

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico's 33 counties asked the state's highest court Thursday to decide whether gay marriage is legal in the state and to stop the spread of lawsuits that have forced some county officials to start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

The New Mexico Association of Counties and clerks statewide filed a petition seeking clarity in a legal dispute that has changed rapidly in the past two weeks since a southern New Mexico clerk independently began issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.

Since then, seven other counties followed — some because of court orders in response to lawsuits by same-sex couples.

More than 900 marriage licenses have been granted to gay and lesbian couples in the state, according to the lawsuit.

It remains uncertain whether the Supreme Court will accept the case.

"The bottom line is we're looking for a uniform answer," said Steve Kopelman, general counsel for the county group. "There's a controversy here. This is not a simple issue legally. But we're not weighing in on the moral issue. We're weighing in on the law."

New Mexico law doesn't explicitly prohibit or authorize gay marriage. However, the marriage laws — unchanged since 1961 — contain a marriage license application with sections for male and female applications. There also are references to "husband" and "wife."

The current and previous state attorneys general have said the law effectively prohibits gay marriage, although current Attorney General Gary King also has said he believes such a prohibition is unconstitutional.

A state district court judge in Albuquerque last week ruled it is a violation of New Mexico's constitution to deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The judge based his decision on a 1972 constitutional amendment adopted by voters that prohibits discrimination "on account of the sex of any person."

Two county clerks that were defendants in that case decided not to directly appeal the judge's ruling. However, the county association and the state's 31 other county clerks — including several already issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples — joined the lawsuit to provide a way to quickly move the gay marriage question to the Supreme Court.

The five justices previously turned down efforts by gay rights advocates to get a ruling on the marriage issue. The advocates had attempted to get a decision by filing lawsuits directly with the Supreme Court rather than through an appeal of a lower court decision.

The counties procedurally are asking for a special order from the Supreme Court rather than filing a traditional appeal that would take longer to resolve, said Daniel Ivey-Soto, a lawyer for county clerks and a Democratic state senator.

Their petition says the clerks who are not issuing marriage licenses need "clarity of the law" to proceed with their obligations and "object to assumed constitutional interpretations for which there is no precedent."

The counties also asked the justices to temporarily halt pending district court lawsuits on gay marriage until they make a statewide decision on the issue.

by Anonymousreply 5209/05/2013

"We wanted a piece of paper that said, 'Yes, the 20 years have not been in vain,'"

Wow, a piece of paper can do that?

Now you can stop feeling so sad and disillusioned.

by Anonymousreply 5309/05/2013

New Mexico Supreme Court sets October 23rd for a hearing brought by counties for clarification on gay marriage.

SANTA FE, New Mexico (Reuters) - The New Mexico Supreme Court agreed on Friday to decide once and for all whether same-sex matrimony should be legal statewide after several counties began issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples, prompting a legal challenge.

Stepping into an intensifying debate over gay marriage in a state where same-sex unions are neither expressly recognized nor prohibited by law, the New Mexico court set a hearing for October 23 to consider a request from all 33 counties statewide to settle the matter.

All five of the state Supreme Court justices concurred in ordering a review of the case without comment.

The justices had previously declined to intervene on the issue, saying they would leave it to the lower courts to rule on lawsuits being filed in different counties.

At least two court decisions since August have tipped the scales in favor of same-sex unions in New Mexico, which gay rights advocates hope will join 13 other U.S. states and the District of Columbia in recognizing gay marriages outright.

Full article at link:

by Anonymousreply 5409/08/2013

Read the third paragraph below for the Attorney that will be representing the Republican lawmakers that initiated the lawsuit going before the New Mexico Supreme Count on October 23rd:

GOP lawmakers have hired an attorney to represent them in a same-sex marriage lawsuit in New Mexico.

Albuquerque attorney Paul Becht will represent the seven Republican lawmakers who filed the suit. They are suing Doña Ana County Clerk Lynn Ellins for issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.

"You know a marriage is a relationship with which children come about and they have to be reared, cared for and taught and that's a basic fundamental of a culture," Becht said.

Last month, Ellins started issuing the licenses, saying it was the right thing to do.

The New Mexico Supreme Court will hear arguments on the issue on Oct. 23.

There are now eight New Mexico counties issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples.

by Anonymousreply 5509/11/2013

If you turn on your local news in New Mexico, they always show a different gay couple getting married,

by Anonymousreply 5609/11/2013

Most gay couples live in Santa Fe, but you see many lesbians in Albuquerque..

by Anonymousreply 5709/11/2013

[quote][R39], wouldn't you prefer living in NM anyway?

Yeah, the weather is great all the time...and it is the home of Breaking Bad. ;)

by Anonymousreply 5809/11/2013
Loading
Need more help? Click Here.