Dona Ana County commissioners to discuss gay marriage issues on Tuesday

Posted at: 08/24/2013 10:21 PM
Updated at: 08/24/2013 10:25 PM
By: Chris Ramirez, KOB Eyewitness News 4 and staff

County commissioners in Dona Ana County will meet Tuesday to discuss the whirlwind that has happened there.

The county clerk announced he is opening the doors to same sex marriage and it had a ripple effect across the state.

The announcement caught New Mexico by surprise.

Wednesday, Dona Ana County Clerk Lynn Ellins became the first elected official in the last nine years to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.

"From a legal perspective I think the attorney general is right on that the court will declare this action that I'm taking valid,” said Ellins. “I believe in my heart it's the right thing to do."

Since Wednesday, 139 couples have tied the knot in Las Cruces with some couples driving in from Texas and all over New Mexico.

“We have three kids so this is important for all of us,” said one newly married woman.

On Friday came another shockwave, but this time it was in Santa Fe County.

District Court Judge Sarah Singleton ordered the clerk there to start issuing marriages to same sex couples.

For the first time in New Mexico history, there were two counties issuing marriage certificates to a group of people, who until before, never had the legal ground to get one. 

It has not happened yet, but Republican lawmakers have promised to try to get a court order to block any more same sex marriages in the state.