USA, New Mexico: Briefs Filed in Marriage Equality Case

Written by scott on September 24th, 2013

New Mexico MapSeveral briefs were just filed in New Mexico’s marriage equality case. reports on one:

Today, the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of New Mexico, the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), the law firm of Sutin, Thayer & Browne APC, and other New Mexico attorneys filed a brief with the New Mexico State Supreme Court on behalf of six couples seeking the freedom to marry for all same-sex couples in New Mexico. The brief was requested by the NM Supreme Court in response to a petition filed by 33 New Mexico County Clerks asking the court to issue a state-wide, binding resolution on the legality of same-sex marriage.

Said Laura Schauer Ives, ACLU-NM legal director, via press release: “Every New Mexico court that has considered our claims has agreed that it is unconstitutional to deny marriage to loving, committed same-sex couples. We are hopeful that the New Mexico Supreme Court will agree that same-sex couples in our communities deserve full respect and recognition of their relationships, and issue a writ to resolve all claims on constitutional grounds.”

The GOP also got into the act. the Albuquerque Journal reports:

Nearly two dozen current and former Republican legislators are urging New Mexico’s highest court to declare that state law prohibits same-sex marriage. An Arizona-based group called the Alliance Defending Freedom filed a friend-of-the-court brief with the state Supreme Court in a case that could resolve whether gay marriage is legal in New Mexico. Monday is the deadline for submitting written arguments to the court.

Ah yes, the Alliance Defending Freedom (formerly the Alliance Defense Fund) – haven’t heard from them in awhile…

Also in New Mexico, Attorney General Gary King slammed the idea of putting the issue to a public vote. Joe.My.God reports:

“Here is where some critics have incorrectly interpreted the legal process. Some have said that I am trying to unilaterally disregard state law by not suing county clerks who have elected to issue same sex marriage licenses. Several District Courts have addressed the issue. Two separate judges essentially ordered two different county clerks to begin issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples. Another judge ruled that the state’s prohibitive statutes are unconstitutional, paving the way for another clerk to start issuing the licenses. I maintain that the best way to resolve this issue is for the NM Supreme Court to decide whether our current law is unconstitutional. Finally, some people, including the governor, say that the issue of whether same sex couples should be afforded the same rights as everyone else in our state must be decided by the voters. I urge the reader to consider the following: The Emancipation Proclamation of 1863; The 19th Amendment (Women’s Suffrage) in 1920; the Civil Rights Act of 1964;—none of which were voted upon by the general electorate.”

Go, Gary, go!

The state Supreme Court will hear the case on October 23rd.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in New Mexico.


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