ACLU files same-sex marriage challenge

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Lawsuit > Organization wants Supreme Court to decide the dispute

By The Staff

The American Civil Liberties Union of New Mexico filed a lawsuit Thursday aimed at forcing state officials to recognize same-sex marriage under current New Mexico law.

The legal action marked yet another effort by advocacy groups that was touched off earlier this week when Santa Fe officials tried to persuade county clerks to issue same-sex marriage licenses across the state.
The lawsuit was filed in state district court on behalf of two lesbian couples who sought marriage licenses in Bernalillo County.

It claims the current ban on same-sex marriage violates the New Mexico Constitution. The ACLU-NM said it wants to eventually get the New Mexico Supreme Court to decide the dispute.

“They filed this lawsuit today in the hopes that someday soon no committed, loving same-sex couple will be turned away and excluded from marriage because of the one they love,” said Peter Simonson, executive director of ACLU-NM.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Albuquerque couple Miriam Rand, 63, and Ona Porter, 66, and Santa Fe couple Rose Griego, 47, and Kim Kiel, 44.

The lawsuit came as local and state officials argue whether current New Mexico law allows county clerks to issue same-sex marriage licenses.

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