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New Mexico Supreme Court hears marriage equality arguments

LGBT Legal Cases Marriage equality Marriage Equality Trials

New Mexico state sealIn a marathon 2-hour session today, the justices of the New Mexico Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the issue of marriage equality in the state, which neither explicitly allows nor forbids same-sex couples from marrying.

KOB4 reports:

Attorneys on both sides of the issue spoke for an hour each and answered dozens of questions from the justices.

James Campbell, an attorney for those opposing gay marriage in New Mexico, cited studies about children needing a mother and father figure in the household. He said the legal definition of marriage is between a man and a woman.

Maureen Sanders, an attorney for same-sex marriage supporters, said all marriages need to be treated equally. She was also grilled with questions from the justices, one who even said New Mexico is “forced” to recognize out of state same-sex marriages.

The five justices unanimously agreed last month to step into the fray in New Mexico, where eight counties–including those with the state’s most populous cities–currently allow same-sex couples to marry.

All 33 of the state’s clerks voted in early September to join a legal challenge filed by the ACLU and the National Center for Lesbian Rights asking the state’s highest court to issue a definitive ruling on the constitutional issues in the case.

According to a report in BuzzFeed, the federal government has begun to recognize same-sex couples’ marriage licenses in New Mexico, even as the issue progresses through the state courts.

The New Mexico Supreme Court could issue its ruling on the matter at any time.

Check back later for an analysis of today’s arguments from EqualityOnTrial’s Scottie Thomaston.

1 Comment

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