THE BLOG

Marriage Comes to New Mexico

08/26/2013 05:25 pm ET | Updated Feb 02, 2016

Nobody ever said that the civil rights fight was simple, but the marriage equality situation in New Mexico right now may currently be the world's most complicated.

Some backstory: New Mexico is the only state in the country with no specific law about marriage equality. Until recently, NM was playing it safe and refusing to issue licenses to gay and lesbian couples. So in response, two groups filed lawsuits against the state earlier this year.

But last week, we got two major surprises: first, a county clerk began issuing licenses, catching everyone by surprise. And then on Friday, a judge ordered Santa Fe to begin issuing licenses as well.

And that's not all. Late last week the ACLU and NCLR filed an emergency request on behalf of an ill New Mexico woman who wants to be married before she dies of brain cancer.

So now the situation in The Land of Enchantment is as turbulent as can be, with multiple lawsuits, legal papers, and public officials all jostling up against each other. Rulings are coming fast and furious, and it's far from clear how it will all be resolved, or how one case will affect the others.

And of course, that's just one state. Other states are seeing marriage turmoil of their own: Indiana, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, and Hawaii all made headlines last week. There's never been a busier -- or more confusing! -- time to be working towards equality.

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