Note: This story has developed significantly throughout the day. The latest update can be found here.
Same-sex couples in Taos County will have to travel to Bernalillo, Santa Fe, or Doña Ana Counties to obtain New Mexico marriage licenses. According to Taos County Clerk Anna Martinez, marriage licenses will not be issued to same-sex couples until the courts or the legislature mandates it. “I have to follow the law, and the law requires that marriage licenses state the male and female,” Martinez said.
Dona Ana County became the first in New Mexico to issue same-sex marriages licenses on August 21, 2013, after County Clerk Lynn Ellins said same-sex couples applying for a license would not be turned away. New Mexico Attorney General Gary King has called state laws prohibiting same sex marriage unconstitutional, and does not plan to challenge the issuance of same-sex marriage licenses by county clerks.
Santa Fe and Bernalillo Counties are complying with an order from 2nd Judicial District Judge Alan Malott to issue marriage licenses to all same-sex couples who apply. Judge Malott’s ruling does not apply to any other counties.
Governor Susana Martinez, an opponent of same-sex marriage, has called for a statewide vote, and several Republican legislators are planning lawsuits to challenge the move by Ellins. Ultimately, the New Mexico Supreme Court may decide the issue.