Supporters and opponents of gay
marriage believe the New Mexico Supreme Court will rule in favor of
allowing gay couples to marry in the state.
Nearly two dozen former and current
lawmakers – all of whom are Republicans except one – on Wednesday
asked the state's highest court during a 2 hour hearing to define
marriage as a heterosexual union in New Mexico. The group is lead by
State Senator Bill Sharer, a Republican.
Sharer sounded pessimistic during a
break at the hearing.
“I think the die was cast before we
came in here,” Sharer is quoted as saying by the Santa
Fe New Mexican. “Whatever happens here won't be the last
word. It's not over until the people have spoken.”
Mexico GOPer William Sharer: Gay men should stop “whoring,” marry
Kim Kiel, a plaintiff in the case, said
that she felt “really good that the outcome will be positive.”
James Campbell of the Christian
conservative Alliance Defending Freedom, which is representing the
lawmakers, was peppered with questions from the justices during
“Why shouldn't you be able to marry
who you choose?” Justice Richard Bosson asked.
Campbell argued that “redefining
marriage” to include gay couples would break the “inherent link
between procreation and marriage.”
Justice Charles Daniels countered that
straight couples without children receive all the benefits of
The debate in New Mexico was ignited by
Dona Ana County Clerk Lynn Ellins, who announced on August 21 that
New Mexico's marriage laws, which are phrased in a gender-neutral
manner, do not prohibit gay couples from marrying and independently
began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Seven counties,
representing nearly 60 percent of the state's population, have joined
Dona Ana in issuing such licenses, some by court order. Nearly 1,500
such licenses have been issued statewide, according to state
The court did not say when it would
issue a ruling.
Currently, 14 states plus the District
of Columbia allow gay couples to marry.