MOREHEAD, Ky. (BP) — A federal judge has granted temporary relief to one of two Kentucky county clerks still refusing to issue any marriage licenses following the Supreme Court’s nationwide legalization of same-sex “marriage.”
In a seemingly convoluted ruling Aug. 17, U.S. District Judge David Bunning denied a request from Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis to delay a previous ruling ordering her to issue marriage licenses to all couples regardless of gender. But Bunning, noting “emotions are running high,” ruled to delay implementation of his denial while the eastern Kentucky clerk appeals to the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati, the Associated Press (AP) reported. The result is that Davis still has not been forced to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
AP reported Davis faces potential fines and jail time as well as possible impeachment from her post if she loses her appeal and still refuses to issue marriage licenses based on her religious beliefs. Bunning said Davis must perform “the duties that she took an oath to perform” regardless of her religious beliefs.
Meanwhile, a central Kentucky county clerk also has remained steadfast in his commitment not to issue any marriage licenses in order to avoid authorizing same-sex “marriages.” Casey Davis — no relation to Kim Davis — of Casey County has not been sued but told Louisville’s WDRB news he believes a lawsuit is a “good possibility.”
Though told by Gov. Steve Beshear to issue marriage licenses to couples regardless of gender, Casey Davis says his right to refuse is protected by a section of the Kentucky constitution stating, “No human authority shall, in any case whatever, control or interfere with the rights of conscience.”
Casey Davis said he would rather go to jail than resign, WDRB reported.