SANTA FE (KRQE) - One same-sex couple with a pending lawsuit is now filing paperwork to take the case straight to the New Mexico Supreme Court.
If that happens, residents could know much sooner than expected where the state stands on the issue.
There are two options for New Mexico at this point, either same-sex marriage will be decided in court or legislators will bring it to the people for a vote.
State law doesn't specify marriage as between a man and a woman but New Mexico's applications for marriage licenses do.
Democratic State Rep. Brian Egolf (D-Santa Fe) is also the attorney for the same-sex couple fighting for the right to marry in Santa Fe.
He was at the courthouse Wednesday trying to file paperwork that would remove the pending lawsuit from district court and, instead, petition to take the case straight to the state Supreme Court.
"This is not a common procedure, so they don't receive a lot of these requests," Egolf said. "We are arguing that this is a matter of great public concern."
But ultimately that is up to the Supreme Court to decide.
Rep. Egolf is hoping to know within the next two weeks if they will indeed take up the case and decide the matter once and for all.
But Republican Rep. Nora Espinoza (R-Roswell), who is against same-sex marriage , doesn't think the issue should be decided in court but by a constitutional amendment.
"Let the people speak," Espinoza said. "Let's put this to rest. Do they want marriage to be between one man and one woman? Let the people speak."
Rep. Espinoza wanted voters to decide if marriage should be defined as a union between a man and a woman, and Rep. Egolf pushed for a different amendment to let voters decide if same-sex marriage should be legal. But both ideas died in committee.
Espinoza thinks it could be hard to legalize gay marriage here with so many Hispanic Democrats.
"I think that's the reason they also can't get it passed is because the majority of Hispanics believe in marriage, and the majority believe in family values," she said.
Rep. Egolf is hopeful the Supreme Court will hear his case and clarify the law before the start of the January session.
The ACLU is also representing a handful of same-sex couples in a separate lawsuit.
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