Appeals Court Upholds Gay Marriage Ruling in Kentucky

27 Aug 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Anti-Gay Kentucky County Clerk Ordered to Begin Issuing Marriage Licenses.

The embattled clerk has refused to issue licenses since the United States Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples across the country have the same right as opposite-sex couples to marry.

Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati denied a request Wednesday from a Kentucky court clerk to stay a federal injunction that called on her to provide marriage licenses to same-sex couples. In the weeks since that June ruling, Davis has become a national spectacle, derided by gay rights activists and celebrated by anti-gay religious people who flocked to Frankfort last week. They said that Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis, whose office is in Moorehead, Ky., had little or no likelihood of prevailing on appeal in her official capacity. Citing personal religious objections against gay marriage, Davis has denied licenses to all couples following the June Supreme Court ruling that cleared the way for same-sex marriage nationwide. In testimony last month in federal court in Covington, Ky., Davis described herself as an Apostolic Christian who believes marriage is defined as the union of one man and one woman under the Bible — “God’s holy word” — and said she contemplated her policy for months.

Governor Steve Beshear hired private legal representation to stop same-sex marriage in Kentucky after a federal judge ruled that the Commonwealth has to recognize such arrangements. The couples argued that they live, work and pay taxes in Rowan County, a county of about 24,000 residents halfway between Lexington, Ky., and Huntington, W.Va., and shouldn’t have to drive elsewhere to obtain the paperwork to get married. Davis immediately opted to violate the new law and the order from Beshear to recognize same-sex marriage after the Supreme Court’s June 26 5-4 ruling.

District Judge David Bunning granted a preliminary injunction against Davis this month, finding that her religious convictions do not excuse her from performing official duties and upholding her oath of office.

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