Kentucky clerk called to hearing over marriage licences
MOREHEAD, Ky. - An attorney says the Kentucky clerk who won't issue marriage licenses and all her deputy clerks have been called for a federal court hearing Thursday morning.
Rowan County Attorney Cecil Watkins says the federal court alerted him that a hearing is scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday in Ashland.
Watkins says clerk Kim Davis is summonsed to attend, along with all the deputy clerks who work in her office.
Davis stopped issuing licenses in the days after the U.S. Supreme Court legalized gay marriage. A federal judge ordered her to issue them, and an appeals court upheld that decision. Still, she turned away couples.
The Supreme Court declined to intervene on Monday, leaving Davis no legal grounds to refuse. But her office turned away several couples Tuesday morning. Davis invoked "God's authority" in doing so.
In a statement Tuesday, clerk Kim Davis says that despite calls for her resignation, she has done her job in Rowan County well. But she says that issuing marriage licenses to gay couples would "violate my conscience." She calls it "a Heaven or Hell decision."
Davis also it's is not "a gay or lesbian issue," but rather a "matter of religious liberty, which is protected under the First Amendment."
Attorneys for the two gay couples who originally sued in the case have asked U.S. District Judge David Bunning to hold Davis in contempt. They want Davis punished only with fees, not jail time.
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