Thursday, August 13, 2015

Court Says Kentucky Clerk Cannot Refuse To Issue Marriage Licences

In Miller v. Davis, (ED KY, Aug. 12, 2015), a Kentucky federal district court granted a preliminary injunction barring Rowan County, Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis from continuing her policy of refusing to issue all marriage licenses because of her religious objections to issuing licences to same-sex couples.  The injunction enjoins Davis from applying the policy to future marriage license requests submitted by plaintiffs in the case.

Rejecting free exercise, free speech, religious test and Kentucky Religious Freedom Act arguments, the court held:
Davis remains free to practice her Apostolic Christian beliefs. She may continue to attend church twice a week, participate in Bible Study and minister to female inmates at the Rowan County Jail. She is even free to believe that marriage is a union between one man and one woman, as many Americans do. However, her religious convictions cannot excuse her from performing the duties that she took an oath to perform as Rowan County Clerk.
The Kentucky ACLU issued a press release announcing the decision.  AP reports on the decisionl  Davis immediately filed a Notice of Appeal (full text). [Thanks to Tom Rutledge for the lead.]