New Mexico Supreme Court Rules Unanimously That Gay Couples Can Marry Statewide


The New Mexico Supreme Court has ruled unanimously in favor of marriage equality, making it the 17th state to allow its citizens the freedom to marry. The ruling is effective immediately.

KOB reports: "The state Supreme Court will now define 'civil marriage' as the voluntary union of two persons to the exclusion of all others. In addition, all rights, protections, and responsibilities that result from the marital relationship shall apply equally to both same-gender and opposite-gender married couples."

2nmThe court ruling, via Freedom to Marry:

We conclude that the purpose of New Mexico marriage laws is to bring stability and order to the legal relationship of committed couples by defining their rights and responsibilities as to one another, their children if they choose to raise children together, and their property.

Prohibiting same-gender marriages is not substantially related to the governmental interests advanced by the parties opposing same-gender marriage or to the purposes we have identified. Therefore, barring individuals from marrying and depriving them of the rights, protections, and responsibilities of civil marriage solely because of their sexual orientation violates the Equal Protection Clause under Article II, Section 18 of the New Mexico Constitution.

We hold that the State of New Mexico is constitutionally required to allow same-gender couples to marry and must extend to them the rights, protections, and responsibilities that derive from civil marriage under New Mexico law.

Read the full ruling HERE.

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  1. Congratulations to all New Mexicans! This is my husband's home state and we know many gay families who live there or originated there. New Mexico has a unique culture and a long history of supporting diversity and civil rights (it was the first western state to legalize inter-racial marriage). We just visited in October during the green chile harvest; we did not feel out of place at all as a male couple with two young kids.

    Posted by: DB | Dec 19, 2013 5:01:05 PM

  2. I knew this would happen but did not know it would be this quick!

    We have "marriage equality envy" here in AZ. But someday...

    Besides, there's a wedding trip to San Francisco (my home) sometime next year.


    Posted by: JakeAZ | Dec 19, 2013 6:00:54 PM

  3. @Fox: actually NM was the first state. The Sandoval 64 were married on February 20 2004, then the next day the state AG (significantly, not a judge) stopped the county from issuing any more licenses. The validity of those marriages was never determined until 2009, when one of the couples broke up and sought a euling as to whether they were legally married. The judge ruled that they were, and the ruling was never appealed. Today's ruling establishes that the Sandoval 64 were the FIRST legally valid same-sex marriages in the US, even before Massachusetts.

    We owe it to these couples to remember and honor them in LGBT history. Nobody gave them much notice, even in the gay community. But they represent the hopes and aspirations of all the couples who tried to marry in those early years, only to be ignored and mocked. Here's to the Sandoval 64, you have earned your due. You're a symbol of the perseverance of the LGBT community.

    Posted by: BZ | Dec 19, 2013 6:39:57 PM

  4. can everyone please share this on their social media pages so that THIS is the LGBT news that gets the most attention!

    Posted by: Two dads | Dec 20, 2013 10:01:35 AM

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