SANTA FE (KRQE) - Monday marked the deadline for both sides to file their arguments with the state Supreme Court in the fight over gay marriage.
The justices granted a hearing on the matter earlier this month after all 33 of New Mexico's county clerks filed a petition asking the court to clarify what the law allows.
"Regardless of how any of them felt about this issue personally, they needed to be able to do their job under the law," said Daniel Ivey-Soto, executive director of the New Mexico County Clerks.
The Supreme Court set Monday as the deadline to submit arguments in the case.
The ACLU, District Court Judge Alan Malott, a group of law professors and Alliance Defending Freedom, an Arizona-based religious group filing on behalf of a block of Republican lawmakers, were just some of the groups weighing in on the matter.
"The legislators who enacted New Mexico's marriage laws more than a century ago unquestionably understood marriage to be the union of a man and a woman," said ADF's attorney Jim Campbell.
But Micah McCoy, the spokesperson for ACLU of New Mexico says, "It is unconstitutional under New Mexico state law to discriminate against same-sex couples simply because of who they love."
The one thing all sides agree on at this point is that the Supreme Court needs to make a decision on the matter.
The issue was fast-tracked after Doña Ana County clerk Lynn Ellins started issuing marriage licenses to gay couples last month, saying same-sex couples were being discriminated against.
Now either by their own choice, or by court order, seven other county clerks are also handing out marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Now the justices will deliberate and hold a hearing on Oct. 23, where oral arguments will be heard. The Supreme Court could make a decision on same-sex marriages that same day.
The ACLU said more than 1,000 same-sex couples have now received marriage licenses in New Mexico.
The Attorney General has said he believes those licenses will be valid even if the court rules gay marriage is illegal in New Mexico.
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