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New Mexico Telegram » Featured, LGBT » First same-sex couples receive marriage licenses in Santa Fe County

First same-sex couples receive marriage licenses in Santa Fe County

Linda Siegle and Liz Stephanics get married. Photo by Robotclaw666/Flickr

Following a court order, Santa Fe County became the second county in the state to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Santa Fe County clerk Geraldine Salazar indicated in a statement that she would comply with the court order — and Santa Fe County would be the third county in the state to ever issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Dona Ana County is currently issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples and Sandoval County did so for 8 hours in 2004.

“I am a fervent supporter of same-sex marriage in New Mexico and have always believed that the restrictive and antiquated statutes in our State must fall to principles of equal protection embodied in our Constitution,” Salazar said in a her statement. “I have been frustrated recently wanting to issue licenses but being confronted with long standing statutes that do not permit it. Now that Judge Singleton has ordered me to issue a license to Messrs. Hanna and Hudson on constitutional grounds, I intend to do so and to issue a license to any same-sex couple who desires one and are otherwise qualified. By complying with the Judge’ s order we will be issuing licenses legally and will not continue to use limited county resources on further litigation.”

Steve Terrell of the Santa Fe New Mexican tweeted that the first couple to take advantage of the issuance of marriage licenses to same-sex couples were Linda Siegel and Liz Stephanics. The two were married in the county commission chambers. Stephanics serves on the Santa Fe County Commission.

Rep. Brian Egolf, D-Santa Fe, is a lawyer representing a same-sex couple that sued to receive a marriage license and it was his case that prompted the district court judge to issue her order to the Santa Fe County Clerk.

Alex Hanna and Yon Hudson decided to wait to have a ceremony until their family could attend.

In a short phone interview before the clerk began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, Egolf noted the historic nature of these marriage licenses.

“This is the first time in state history that a judge has ruled that the state constitution requires marriage equality,” Egolf told NM Telegram.

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Matthew Reichbach has blogged about New Mexico politics since 2006. Matthew was a co-founder of New Mexico FBIHOP with his brother and part of the original hirings at the groundbreaking website the New Mexico Independent. Matthew has covered events such as the Democratic National Convention and Netroots Nation. In addition to politics, Matthew is an avid sports fan, especially of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and TV fan.

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2 Responses to "First same-sex couples receive marriage licenses in Santa Fe County"

  1. Toots Obenshain says:

    Congratulation Linda and Liz and of course, another congratulation to Dair and Mary. It’s about time that NM stepped into the 21st Century.
    What a terrible time for me to be out of the country and not there to help celebrate and fight for equal rights.
    Again congratulations to all

  2. Congratulations everyone! Thank you Judge Singleton and Rep. Egolf.