Gay Marriage

Gay Marriage Legal in New Mexico County, Rules Judge

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Credit: Robyn Ramsay / Foter / CC BY-NC

A New Mexico judge ruled on Monday that same-sex marriage is legal in the state's most populous county.

District Judge Alan Malott, who oversaw the case, stated:

Gay and lesbian citizens of New Mexico have endured a long history of discrimination. Denial of the right to marry continues this unfortunate, intolerable pattern and establishes irreparable injury on plaintiffs' part.

His ruling affects Bernalillo County, home to 673,000 residents. The county clerk of courts began issuing marriage licenses this morning.

Laura Schauer Ives, an American Civil Liberties (ACLU) lawyer on the case, expected a much narrower ruling and described Malott's broad declaration as "monumental." Reuters notes that the unexpected decision opens up new questions about how the state will proceed:

The group was not sure how the ruling would affect the state's other 30 counties which are not issuing same-sex marriage licenses, said Micah McCoy, spokesman for the ACLU of New Mexico.

"It's a pretty unconventional route for this kind of case to take, but it will be very useful in arguing the case in other counties where people want to get married," McCoy said.

Not all approve of Malott's ruling, though. Bill Sharer, a state senator and a Republican, said:

It is inexplicable how a district court just today discovered a new definition of marriage in our laws, when our marriage law has not been changed in over a century.

This is not the first time a New Mexico court has made a pro-gay marriage decision in recent history. Two other counties already approved issuing marriage licenses regardless of gender. Reuters also highlights the fact that "last week, a judge in Santa Fe County ordered the county clerk there to issue same-sex marriage licenses and a clerk in the southern part of the state decided to hand out such licenses independently of any court ruling.

Al Jazeera explains that "New Mexico has never passed legislation banning or allowing same-sex marriage," which is why "Malott's ruling was seen as having more impact, as he explicitly declared that gay marriage was legal." 

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    1. “Bernalillo Country can now begin issuing marriage certificates to gay couples” sounds much less morally objectionable and/or ethically victorious than “GAY MARRIAGE DE-CRIMINALIZED.”

  1. One step forward for striking down an arbitrary administrative distinction, two steps back for respecting basic property rights. Thanks, New Mexico!

  2. “This is not the first time a New Mexico court has made a pro-gay marriage decision in recent history. Two other counties already approved issuing marriage licenses regardless of gender. Reuters also highlights the fact that “last week, a judge in Santa Fe County ordered the county clerk there to issue same-sex marriage licenses and a clerk in the southern part of the state decided to hand out such licenses independently of any court ruling.”

    Well, I guess that chips away at the ol’ talking point that New Mexico’s enforcement of its “human rights” law against wedding photographers has nothing to do with the marriage laws.

    Let’s hope that at least a few counties keep the opposite-sex definition of marriage, so that this talking point can still be kept on life-support.

    1. Much like abortion, amiright?

      1. Uh, what?

        Hey, I do the trolling Americans won’t do. Or would if I weren’t a US citizen.

        1. I wish Congress would put the time and effort into these debates that their aspirants on either pro and anti sides put in. The feds would be forever deadlocked in interminable, tedious debates.

    2. Well, I guess that chips away at the ol’ talking point that New Mexico’s enforcement of its “human rights” law against wedding photographers has nothing to do with the marriage laws

      Wait, what’s your point again?

      1. New Mexico was the state which enforced “antidiscrimination laws” against wedding photogs without having a statewide recognition of SSM. This was cited over and over to say “look, I told you there was no connection between these two types of laws!”

    3. “Well, I guess that chips away at the ol’ talking point that New Mexico’s enforcement of its “human rights” law against wedding photographers has nothing to do with the marriage laws.”

      Given that that decision occurred before this one, I don’t see how that’s the case. If by “something to do with” you mean that the people who support laws antidiscrimination laws that cover sexual orientation tend to also support gay marriage, then yes, they have something to do with each other. I don’t really know who has disputed that, and I’m not sure what the implication of that is supposed to be.

      1. “what the implication of that is supposed to be”

        That this growing tide of SSM bills tightens the screws tighter and tighter on private business.

        1. Well that’s not at all proven by what you’ve presented in this thread. There was no SSM bill or court decision prior to the wedding photographer one, so if anything, you’re undermining your own argument

        2. That this growing tide of SSM bills tightens the screws tighter and tighter on private business.

          Well, that is quite the sticky little point isn’t it?

    4. That’s pretty retarded. The Human Rights Commission thing happened fucking 7 years ago. It doesn’t chip away at anything. They are two fucking different laws.

  3. FWIW, the majority of lesbians don’t look like the ones pictured.
    Those girls may not even be lesbians.

    1. I have a coworker who is a lesbian but her and her girlfriend are both attractive femmes.

      Her girlfriend actually resembles the girl on the right in that picture.

      1. Yeah, ummm, pics or it didn’t happen.

        Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

        1. Use your imagination. My coworker is a skinny blonde, so I personally don’t think she’s anything special but she’s definitely not butch.

  4. If there’s one thing we haven’t had enough of today, it’s TEAM RED KULTUR WAR retards. More, please.

  5. The very definition of judicial activism, folks. Can’t get what you want through either the ballot box or already existing laws, so you decide to make your own law from the bench.

    All well and good so long as the judge does things you like, but what happens when he doesn’t and he still decides that he’d rather impose his own opinions on matters than those written into law through legitimate processes?

    I’ll tell you what happens: Buenos Aires, 1943. Panama City, 1989. With greater and greater frequency: Washington DC, 2013.

    1. Yeah, just wait until some county judge or Marriage License issuer in a state with ssm decides to not issue a license.
      He or she will be gone in 24 hours.

      1. Didn’t that happen in Louisiana a few years ago, except it was over an interracial marriage?

    2. The very definition of judicial activism, folks.

      That’s my take. This sure looks like textbook legislation from the bench.

  6. “… and a clerk in the southern part of the state decided to hand out such licenses independently of any court ruling.”

    How is a minor executive branch official deciding what the law is on his own a laudable act?

  7. No alt-text for this one? Really?

  8. Oh wow man, no way how cool is that? Wow.

    http://www.Global-Anon.com

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