N.M. county ordered to issue same-sex marriage licenses
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — An Albuquerque judge on Monday ordered the clerk of New Mexico’s most populous county to join two other counties in the state in issuing marriage licenses for gay and lesbian couples.
The order from State District Judge Alan Malott came in a case involving a lesbian couple who sought an emergency ruling because one of them is dying.
In an unexpected turn, the couple was able to get married Friday after a judge in a separate case ordered the Santa Fe clerk to issue same-sex licenses.
Malott said New Mexico’s constitution prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
Earlier Monday, Bernalillo County Clerk Maggie Toulouse Oliver said she had 1,000 licenses printed in case Malott ordered her to issue licenses for same-sex marriages.
Also last week, Dona Ana County clerk Lynn Ellins began on his own issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. He started issuing the licenses Wednesday. Ellins said 137 couples got licenses last week, and 12 more had received them by midmorning Monday.
A group of Republican legislators is planning to file a lawsuit to stop Ellins.
Ellins, however, says, “I think the train has pulled out of the station.