Skip to main content

Taos is a small town; the whole of Taos County has something short of 33,000 population. And it's the 6th county in New Mexico to announce it will issue same sex marriage licenses, starting tomorrow morning. It feels special because I'm personally acquainted with Judge Jeff McElroy who issued the order, on behalf of District Judge Sarah Backus. I contributed to Backus's election campaign, which was run by an old friend.

A state district court judge in Taos has signed an alternative writ of mandamus directing the Taos County clerk to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The alternative writ requires Taos County Clerk Anna Martinez to begin issuing licenses, or explain why she won’t during a hearing scheduled for Sept. 5.
For many years, I've turned in voter registration forms to Anna Martinez. She's the one to sign up with to be a poll worker, which I've done numerous times. I say hi to her at the grocery store. And now:
The Taos County clerk says she will start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples on Wednesday, making it the sixth county in New Mexico to do so. Clerk Anna Martinez said she would follow a district court judge’s order issued Tuesday directing her office to grant licenses to gay and lesbian couples. She said her office will make license applications available starting at 8 a.m.
She could contest it, but she's not doing so.

A gay couple, Dale Schuette and Reg Stark, applied for a license on Monday - yesterday, that is. Martinez said the law was ambiguous so she'd need a court order. This afternoon, they got a hearing, an immediate ruling in their favor and a hug from the County Clerk. Once she issues the license in the morning, Judge McElroy will perform the ceremony.

Leaving the courthouse with mere hours to plan for their wedding due to be presided over by Judge McElroy, Schuette asked Stark if he expected to feel different after the ceremony.

"Probably not," Stark said. "Not after we've been together 30 years."

This is 6 out of 33 counties of the state, but it's over half the state's population in those 6 counties, so the process is well underway. There's something extra special for this to be happening right at home, policy carried out by people I know and like personally. Good step forward, this.

There's more could be said, but that's the main point. I've got an arm temporarily out of commission, so typing is tough just now. But I did want to share this happy smile in a world fraught with so much trouble.

The six counties are listed below (with major cities/towns, 2010 Census population.) In the order they've come on board:

  1. Santa Fe (Santa Fe) pop. 146,375
  2. Dona Ana (Las Cruces) pop. 214,445
  3. Bernalillo (Albuquerque) pop. 662,564
  4. San Miguel (Las Vegas) pop. 28,891
  5. Valencia (Belen, Los Lunas), pop. 76,571
  6. Taos (Taos) pop. 32,779

Originally posted to New Mexico Kossaks on Tue Aug 27, 2013 at 05:58 PM PDT.

Also republished by Kossacks for Marriage Equality.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site