An attorney for Sandoval County, N.M., clerk Victoria Dunlap has launched a new Web site detailing the controversy the clerk stirred up by issuing marriage licenses to gay couples. The site includes discussion about same-sex marriage and the law in New Mexico, in addition to other parts of the country where the debate continues. The site also includes Dunlap's reply to the latest attempt by Atty. Gen. Patricia Madrid to maintain a temporary restraining order prohibiting the clerk from issuing any more same-sex marriage licenses. Dunlap alleges in the reply that the order was improperly obtained and continues to be improperly maintained. "They just can't leave a restraining order blocking us that way," said Paul
Livingston, Dunlap's attorney. "The use of a restraining order isn't to stop the rights of the people, especially in a state where, it is my contention, same-sex unions are favored and not prohibited."
A status conference is scheduled for May 7 before state district judge Louis McDonald. McDonald has said the conference will help him get up to speed on the controversial case. He's expected to decide whether to make permanent or rescind the temporary restraining order. Dunlap issued 66 marriage licenses to same-sex couples on February 20, saying state law didn't appear to define any gender constraints. Dunlap stopped later that day when Madrid issued a letter saying the licenses were invalid. When Dunlap announced in March that she would once again issue the licenses, Madrid sought the temporary restraining order.