--2 Morning Word: Widespread coverage of same sex marriage arguments
         
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Morning Word: Widespread coverage of same sex marriage arguments

And the rest of New Mexico's news

October 24, 2013, 8:00 am
By Matthew Reichbach
  • Obviously, the big news of the day was the state Supreme Court hearing a same-sex marriage case. The Supreme Court did not rule from the bench, as the court had previously announced would be the case, but lawyers expected a ruling relatively quickly.
  • You know it's big news when the New York Times covers it.
    New Mexico remains the only state that does not have a law or constitutional amendment allowing or prohibiting same-sex marriage, and it also does not recognize domestic partnerships. Its statutes governing the rights of married couples are ambiguous: some use gender-specific terms, others do not. And while marriage license applications are gender-neutral, marriage licenses contain the terms “bride” and “groom.”

    “Today, this court is given the opportunity to give credence to the notion of equality,” Maureen Sanders, a lawyer for same-sex couples who filed a lawsuit in March seeking the right to marry, told the five justices. “The court can bring certainty to the uncertainty in the state.”
  • Here are some local takes.

    The Albuquerque Journal has a pretty comprehensive story. NM Capitol Report focused on Lynn Ellins, the Doña Ana County Clerk who started the ball rolling on the case by issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

    Steve Terrell warned against predicting which way the justices would decide... and reported on State Sen. Bill Sharer, R-Farmington, predicting they would rule against his stance that same-sex marriage should be illegal.

    KUNM live streamed the entire hearing and filed a report. The Santa Fe Reporter looked at the scene outside after the arguments.

    And the TV station takes: KRQE, KOB, KOAT.
  • State Senator and gubernatorial candidate Linda Lopez was harshly critical of the redacted behavioral health audit that the state released. Lopez writes that "the whole fiasco is rotten to the core."
  • Sen. Martin Heinrich will be on the KUNM Call-In Show this morning. It goes from 8:00 am to 9:00 am todayAnd.
  • Immigration groups are hopeful that they can convince Rep. Steve Pearce to support immigration reform. Pearce, the lone Republican in the New Mexico delegation, represents the area of New Mexico on the border with Mexico.
  • Albuquerque's city clerk is going to leave the position following the canvas of the runoff and 20-week abortion ban vote.

    City Clerk Amy Bailey tells me she misses practicing law and will return to private practice following #ABQ2013 runoff and canvas.

    — Peter St.Cyr (@Peter_StCyr) October 23, 2013
  • The state is beginning an investigation into the Bernalillo County investments.
  • New Mexico Compass covers the protests against teacher evaluations in Albuquerque.
  • Mid-Heights Messenger did as well.
  • The Bernalillo County Commission picked a Santa Fe resident to fill the vacancy in House District 50 after the late Rep. Stephen Easley passed away earlier this year. Martinez will get to choose from the selections of the counties represented in the district.
  • Outgoing Santa Fe mayor David Coss, who will no be seeking reelection, delivered his final State of the City address on Tuesday.
    Coss included the city’s involvement in the push to legalize same-sex marriage as one of his most memorable accomplishments as mayor. In March, the city issued a legal analysis that same-sex marriage was already legal in New Mexico, one of a series of events that led to the state Supreme Court taking up the issue Wednesday.
  • Rain is nice, but State Engineer Scott Verhines said to really help with the drought we should hope for a winter of healthy snow in Colorado.
    The Albuquerque area and Rio Grande Valley are “in good shape for the next year,” Verhines told a breakfast meeting of the Economic Forum of Albuquerque. But he cautioned that snowfall in the mountains of southern Colorado will be key to whether normal San Juan/Chama water deliveries continue in the future.
  • Milan Simonich laments that all politicians sound the same these days. It reminds me of the famous scene in Bull Durham where Crash Davis teaches "Nuke" LaLoosh about cliches. There are some bad words in there, in case you're clicking on that clip at work.
  • The Santa Fe Reporter looks at donors to gubernatorial candidates and when they asked Martinez's PAC about one contribution, the campaign returned the donation.
  • The Department of Workforce Solutions wants an additional $11.4 million in state funding.
  • The state's troubled Department of Workforce Solutions computer system continues to be a problem for the state.
  • The New Mexico delegation asked for a disaster declaration for the flooding.
  • La Jicarita looks at what David Correia calls the assault on environmental protections from the Martinez administration. In this case, the blog looks at the controversial copper rule that lightened groundwater contamination rules for copper mines in the state.
  • There is a plan for the lesser prairie chicken that doesn't involve listing it as an Endangered Species. The plan has the backing of Sen. Tom Udall and Rep. Steve Pearce -- but an environmental group was harshly critical of the plan.
  • New Mexico Mercury's Insight New Mexico spoke to Southwest Organizer for Food and Water Watch Eleanor Bravo "about the societal and environmental impact of fracking."
  • Media News:

    It looks like KOB has redesigned its website. We'll see if it is an improvement over the old site (which seems all but assured). The KRQE redesign was flashy, but there are still some problems when trying to navigate the site on mobile.
  • When Carlsbad Caverns National Park reopened after the government shutdown, there was something different -- an interim superintendent. The previous superintendent had been slated to retire on October 1 when the shutdown occurred. For now, Dennis Vasquez is managing both Guadalupe Mountains National Park and Carlsbad Caverns until a new superintendent is found.
  • Former Albuquerque mayor and two-term State Land Commissioner Jim Baca says state Democrats have to prioritize when it comes to next year's elections, saying that spending time and money trying to defeat Gov. Susana Martinez could be a waste.
    Will they foolishly spend all of their time trying to get that right wing darling Susana Martinez out of office, or will they use some common sense and concentrate on the election of a Democratic Attorney General and Secretary of State? Also, all members of the House of Representatives are up for election next year and keeping strong Democratic numbers in that body are paramount.
  • In eastern New Mexico, delays to the Ute Project were costly.
  •  

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