New Mexico is one step close to marriage equality as five city councilors vote in favor, and three voted against
New Mexico capital Santa Fe voted in favor of same-sex marriage last night (24 April).
Over an hour of discussion, five city councilors voted for equal marriage, one voted against, and two abstained.
While the passage of the resolution does not change the law, supporters are saying this is the first step towards marriage equality in the US state.
As reported by local news, the council chambers were packed with a sea of LGBT people wearing red to show their support.
‘I have never felt such joy. It’s amazing. This is about equality,’ supporter Carol Norris told Eyewitness News.
Father Duncan Lanum, from St Thomas Anglican Church, condemned the decision saying it would divide the state.
‘Satin is, I believe…and I really mean this, Satan is down in Hell clapping at this point over what they have just done,’ he said.
Last month, the mayor of New Mexico David Coss urged county clerks to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples due to the law being ‘sufficiently vague’.
He said the state law ‘supports’ it as the marriage statute does not specify gender.
The US state does not explicitly permit or prohibit same-sex marriage, does not offer civil unions or domestic partnerships, but does recognize other same-sex marriages from other states.
In 2004, a clerk issued licenses to 64 same-sex couples before being ordered to stop by the state attorney general, who deemed the licenses invalid.
On the same day as the Santa Fe vote, Rhode Island’s state senate passed a same-sex marriage bill.
The state will now become the 10th to legalize gay marriage, alongside New York, Massachusetts, Washington, Maine, Iowa, Vermont, Maryland, Connecticut, and New Hampshire plus the District of Columbia.