BREAKING: Same-Sex Marriage Legal in New Mexico?

new_mexico_rainbowThe City of Santa Fe thinks so, according to a press release from ProgressNow New Mexico:

This morning we joined Mayor Coss and Councilor Bushee to announce that they are sponsoring an official resolution “recognizing that same-sex marriage is legal in New Mexico and encouraging New Mexico’s county clerks to issue licenses to same-sex couples.

That’s a big deal and here’s how it works:

Santa Fe’s City Attorney Geno Zamora dug into the law and found that:

  • New Mexico’s laws do not define marriage as between a man and a woman, the definitions are gender-neutral,
  • A statutory list of prohibited marriages does not list same-sex couples;
  • Same-sex marriages from other states are already recognized by New Mexico law;
  • To discriminate against same-sex couples would violate the New Mexico Constitution which requires equality under the law regardless of sex.

His legal memo is the basis of the resolution.

The city says the resolution provides the legal justification for county clerks to issue marriage licenses to loving, committed couples and tells couples how to file suit if they are denied.

The resolution will be introduced next week, just as the Supreme Court takes up arguments on gay marriage and DOMA.

Very interesting. I’m not holding my breath, but wouldn’t it be crazy if, thanks to a legal quirk, New Mexico leapfrogged over Illinois and Minnesota and became the 10th U.S. state to allow same-sex couples to legally marry?

I’ll be sure to post updates as this story continues to unfold. Stay tuned!

h/t: Laurel Ramseyer

UPDATE: Please sign and share this petition and become a “citizen co-sponsor” of the City of Santa Fe’s marriage equality resolution. They’re going to need a big show of support — let’s give it to them!

What do you think?