Los Alamos County Clerk Says Same-Sex Marriage Not Yet Legal in New Mexico

By GREG KENDALL
Los Alamos Daily Post

Santa Fe Mayor David Coss announced that he believes same-sex marriage is legal in New Mexico and is encouraging city and county clerks to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. 

Santa Fe City Attorney Geno Zamora and City Councilor Patti Bushee also voiced their support for gay marriage.

“Marriage law in New Mexico is gender-neutral and does not define marriage as between a man and a woman,” Zamora said. “New Mexico already recognizes valid marriages performed in other states between same-sex couples; it would violate our state’s constitution to deny equal rights in our own families.”

The Los Alamos Daily Post asked Los Alamos County Clerk Sharon Stover if she will begin issuing same sex marriage licenses.

Los Alamos County Clerk Sharon Stover at her swearing in ceremony. Photo by Greg Kendall/ladailypost

“No, we would not issue a marriage license (to same sex couples) … none have been requested … we will not issue a marriage license, because they would be invalid under our current law,” Stover siad. “There is New Mexico statute 40-1-18 and if you print it out it says ‘Male and Female.’ I consider (same sex marriage) to be invald under current law.”

Former Attorney General Patricia Madrid in 2004 issued an opinion saying same sex marriage is a violation of state law.

“Over the years, the legislature has tried to take it up, but nothing has happened yet on this,” Stover said. “This is Coss’ attorney telling him that it is legal. Clerks (across the state) are holding tight on this issue until we get the green light. Until it is legal – no.”

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