Clerk asks judge to delay order as she appeals
A same-sex couple was turned away from the Rowan County courthouse Thursday as County Clerk Kim Davis formally asked a judge to delay his order requiring her to resume issuing marriage licenses.
David Moore and David Ermold, of Rowan County, were refused a marriage license by Deputy County Clerk Nathan Davis.
Kim Davis filed a motion early Thursday asking U.S. District Judge David Bunning to stay a preliminary injunction he issued late Wednesday at the request of four Rowan County couples.
In that order, Bunning told Davis to issue marriage licenses again despite her religious objections to the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 26 decision legalizing gay marriage.
Davis has appealed Bunning’s order to the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. She asked Bunning on Thursday to not require her to issue marriage licenses until the appellate court has time to intervene.
A marriage license issued to a same-sex couple “substantially and irreparably burdens (Davis’) conscience and religious freedom because it represents endorsement of, and participation in, a proposed union that is not marriage according to her sincere and deeply-held religious convictions,” one of Davis’ attorneys, Jonathan Christman, wrote in Thursday’s request for a stay.
“That searing act of validation would forever echo in her conscience — and, if it happened, there is no absolution or correction that any earthly court can provide to rectify it,” Christman wrote. “If she is forced to authorize and approve a same-sex marriage license, no one and no court can unring that bell.”
In his order on Wednesday, Bunning said Davis is entitled to her private religious objections to same-sex marriage. But as a government official, he said, she is obliged to follow the law and obey the Supreme Court’s decision.
By John Cheves