New Mexico's 33 counties asked the state's highest court Thursday to decide whether gay marriage is legal in the state and to stop the spread of lawsuits that have forced some county officials to start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
The New Mexico Association of Counties and clerks statewide filed a petition seeking clarity in a legal dispute that has changed rapidly in the past two weeks since a southern New Mexico clerk independently began issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.
Since then, seven other counties followed — some because of court orders in response to lawsuits by same-sex couples.
More than 900 marriage licenses have been granted to gay and lesbian couples in the state, according to the lawsuit.
It remains uncertain whether the Supreme Court will accept the case.