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PNS Daily Newscast - July 18, 2018 


Trump now says he misspoke as he stood side-by-side with Putin. Also on the Wednesday rundown: A Senate committee looks at the latest attempt to weaken the Endangered Species Act; and public input is being sought on Great Lakes restoration.

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SCOTUS Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage: What Does it Mean for NM?

PHOTO: Kim Kiel (L), a plaintiff in the ACLU New Mexico "freedom to marry" lawsuit and partner Rose Griego, applied for a marriage license at the Bernalillo County Clerk’s office in mid-March and were turned away. Courtesy ACLU New Mexico.
PHOTO: Kim Kiel (L), a plaintiff in the ACLU New Mexico "freedom to marry" lawsuit and partner Rose Griego, applied for a marriage license at the Bernalillo County Clerk’s office in mid-March and were turned away. Courtesy ACLU New Mexico.
June 27, 2013

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. = It will take federal action before New Mexico same-sex couples benefit from Wednesday's U.S. Supreme Court decisions overturning the Defense of Marriage Act and California's Proposition 8.

The ruling opens the door for same-sex couples to file income taxes jointly and could allow them to receive other federal benefits, but only in the 13 states that recognize same-sex marriage. Even though New Mexico is not one of the 13, Ona Porter, who is part of a same-sex household, said she believes the changes for the Land of Enchantment will follow quickly.

"I think the DOMA decision really opens the gates for every state in the nation to pass their own right-to-marry act," she said. "I expect that our challenge in New Mexico will now be fast-tracked to the New Mexico Supreme Court and that we’ll have a decision, sooner than later."

Porter cited thousands of federal benefits afforded heterosexual married couples and explained what having those benefits would mean to her household.

"We are approaching 70 years old, so one of the things that we think about is our rights to inherit each other’s assets," she said. "In our household, where there are two women and a granddaughter that we’re raising, we have three health-insurance plans. Now, we can have one to cover all of us."

Porter said she was at a watch party when the decision was handed down and the reaction was more than people cheering. She called it emotionally gratifying.

"After being together for 25 years – finally, there is affirmation that this is a relationship of commitment and love that has standing in our society," she said. "For us and for many in that room, it was such significant emotion that that was expressed in tears. I’m not sure that we thought in our lifetime we would ever see this."

In a statement about the ruling, Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., said he is proud to support legislation to repeal DOMA, and that Wednesday’s Supreme Court ruling reflects the progress made for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals around the nation.

Renee Blake, Public News Service - NM