Mexico is now the 17th US state that legalizes gay and lesbian marriages. The governors of Illinois and Hawaii, last month, signed bills into laws, permitting the same-sex nuptials in their states.
In a 31-page opinion, Justice Edward Chavez said,"Denying same-gender couples the right to marry and thus depriving them and their families of the rights, protections and responsibilities of civil marriage violates the equality demanded by the equal protection clause of the New Mexico Constitution."
It also ruled that civil marriage should be "construed to mean the voluntary union of two persons to the exclusion of all others". It further added, "all rights, protections and responsibilities that result from marital relationship shall apply equally to both same-sex and opposite-sex couples".
The New Mexico Supreme Court, finally decided to decide on gay marriages when a few of its countries started issuing licenses for the same. In fact, just before the ruling, approximately 10 counties were processing same-sex marriage applications, as per the spokesman for state Attorney General Gary King, Phil Sisneros.