New Mexico's highest court declares same-sex marriage legal - InfoNews

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New Mexico's highest court declares same-sex marriage legal

FILE - In this Aug. 27, 2013 file photo, Desiree Padilla, left, and her partner Betty Garcia kiss after exchanging vows in a ceremony performed by the Rev. Judith Maynard, background, in Albuquerque. The New Mexico Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in the state Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013, declaring in a ruling that it is unconstitutional to deny a marriage license to gay and lesbian couples. New Mexico joins 16 states and the District of Columbia in allowing gay marriage. (AP Photo/The Albuquerque Journal, Roberto Rosales, File)
December 19, 2013 - 10:32 AM

SANTA FE, N.M. - New Mexico's highest court has legalized same-sex marriage, declaring it is unconstitutional to deny a marriage license to gay and lesbian couples.

The state Supreme Court issued its ruling Thursday. New Mexico joins 16 states and the District of Columbia in allowing gay marriage.

Eight of the state's 33 counties have started issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples since August, when a county clerk in southern New Mexico independently decided to allow the unions.

County officials asked the high court to clarify the law and establish a uniform state policy on gay marriage.

State statutes don't explicitly prohibit or authorize gay marriage. However, county clerks historically have denied marriage licenses to same-sex couples because the law includes a marriage license application with sections for male and female applicants.

News from © The Associated Press, 2013
The Associated Press

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