New Mexico AG Won't Defend Marriage Ban
New Mexico Attorney General Gary King has joined the ranks of his colleagues from states like California and Pennsylvania who've announced they will not defend marriage equality bans in the courts.
In written arguments filed with the court, King said the justices should invalidate the state’s ban on gay marriage if they agree to resolve the issue in a lawsuit filed by two Santa Fe men who were denied a marriage license. King, a Democrat who plans to run for governor next year against Republican Gov. Susana Martinez, said New Mexico law effectively doesn’t allow gay marriages although there’s no statutory provision that specifically prohibits, or authorizes, gay couples to be married. “New Mexico’s guarantee of equal protection to its citizens demands that same-sex couples be permitted to enjoy the benefits of marriage in the same way and to the same extent as other New Mexico citizens,” King said in the filing.
King's announcement comes on the heels of officials in Sante Fe determining there is nothing in state law prohibiting same-sex couples from enjoying equal civil marriage rights.