The New Mexico Supreme Court will hear arguments tomorrow to decide whether same sex marriage is legal in the state. Both sides in the debate are welcoming the intervention of the state’s highest court.
The lawsuit argues that the New Mexico Constitution requires the state to allow same-sex couples the freedom to marry.
In New Mexico, 8 of the state’s 33 counties are actively issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Bernalillo County is one of them. County Clerk Maggie Toulouse Oliver says she was given very clear direction to issue the licenses from a state district court judge. But she says many other county clerks are still waiting for clarity on the issue. "What clerks from other counties in the state are looking for," Oliver explained, "is that clear direction from the supreme court, so that every county is doing the same thing and so that we have a consistent policy across the state."
A group of republican lawmakers filed a separate lawsuit back in August to stop clerks who began voluntarily handing out marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
A final decision on the issue is not expected the day of the hearing.