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New Mexico Resident ID is temporarily rejected as “foreign” by D.C. Clerk: NPR

Gavin Clarkson from Las Cruces, N.M., talks at the Albuquerque Agency in The Associated Press earlier this year. On November…

Gavin Clarkson from Las Cruces, N.M., talks at the Albuquerque Agency in The Associated Press earlier this year. On November 20, a Washington court, D.C., failed to recognize New Mexico as a state and said that Clarkson’s driving license was not a valid ID to get a marriage license.

Russell Contreras / AP

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Russell Contreras / AP

Gavin Clarkson from Las Cruces, N., talks at the Albuquerque Agency in The Associated Press earlier this year. On November 20, a Washington court, D.C., failed to recognize New Mexico as a state and said that Clarkson’s driving license was not a valid ID to get a marriage license.

Russell Contreras / AP

A New Mexico man applying for a marriage permit in Washington, DC, had rejected his state of affairs as a form of identification this month because an clerk and her supervisor thought New Mexico was a foreign country.

Gavin Clarkson, a Las Cruces, NM, resident, said he was at the District of Columbia Marriage Bureau on November 20, applying for a license to marry his fiancée when their nuptial plans struck a short halt. The office clerk told him that he would need an international passport on the apparent belief that he was not a US citizen.

“She thought New Mexico was a foreign country,” he said about the clerk quoted by Las Cruces Sun News. “All the couples behind us who waited in line laughed.”

Clarkson was recently a candidate for the New Mexico government and is a member of the Choctaw Nation. He said he protested the clerk’s decision to his supervisor, who also failed to recognize New Mexico as a country.

“You know you’re from the airport when you apply for a marriage license, give them your New Mexico license, and they’ll be back saying” my supervisor says we can not accept international driving licenses. Do you have a New Mexico pass? “” Clarkson tweeted .

It was not until Clarkson returned to the clerk again and insisted that his license’s driving license was a legitimate form of identification that the clerk finally agreed to accept it and issue him a marriage license.

A District Spokesman for District of Columbia Courts acknowledged the error.

“We understand that a clerk in our marriage agency made a mistake about New Mexico’s 106-year history as a state,” said Leah H. Gurowitz, Media Director and PR for DC Courts, in an email to Sun-News . “We regret the mistake and the small delay that caused a residence in New Mexico when applying for a DC marriage license.”

Clarkson and his now husband Marina, a naturalized citizen from Argentina, said the whole meeting lasted about 20 minutes and eventually they were married with a good story to tell about the process.

Clarksons citizenship was not the only thing that stood for the priest. Marina Clarkson speaks fluent English, but with a small accent. However, the clerk Gavin, not Marina, complimented his language behavior. The left Marina wondered, “Why do you compliment him on his English?”

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