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Kentucky Clerk Refuses to Issue Marriage License to Gay Couple Despite Court Order

Kentucky Clerk Refuses to Issue Marriage License to Gay Couple Despite Court Order

Supporters of gay marriage wave the rainbow flag after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Friday that the U.S. Constitution provides same-sex couples the right to marry at the Supreme Court in Washington, June 26, 2015. The court ruled 5-4 that the Constitution's guarantees of due process and equal protection under the law mean that states cannot ban same-sex marriages. With the ruling, gay marriage will become legal in all 50 states. | (Photo: Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

A Kentucky state employee has maintained her refusal to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples despite a recently issued court order mandating that her office do so.

Kim Davis of Rowan County has declined to follow a court order issued Wednesday by the US District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky.

"The Court must … point out that the act of issuing a marriage license to a same-sex couple merely signifies that the couple has met the legal requirements to marry. It is not a sign of moral or religious approval," read the order.

"Davis, in her official capacity as Rowan County Clerk, is hereby preliminarily enjoined from applying her 'no marriage licenses' policy to future marriage license requests submitted by Plaintiffs."

However Davis has refused to submit to the order, turning away a gay couple that had a copy of the order on Thursday, according to the Associated Press.

"Davis … was the first to be sued and her attorneys vowed to keep fighting in a case legal experts have likened the resistance some local officials put up five decades ago when the Supreme Court legalized interracial marriage," reported the AP.

"Staff in Davis' office said she was on vacation. Though she has six employees authorized to issue licenses, deputy clerk Nathan Davis said the office was advised by its attorneys with the Christian law firm Liberty Counsel to continue refusing same-sex couples as it appeals the judge's decision."

On June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in Obergefell v. Hodges that state level bans on gay marriage violated the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Upholding several lower court decisions, Obergefell was the culmination of over a year of judicial rulings that had struck down several state constitutional amendments passed by popular referenda.

Since the Supreme Court's decision, many county clerks across the nation have either refused to issue marriage licenses to gay couples or resigned from their posts.

The National Organization for Marriage, a pro-traditional marriage group, called Davis and other clerks taking similar actions "absolute heroes."

"All American citizens are encouraged to stand up for marriage, especially through actions such as these," stated NOM on July 1.

"While the opposing side may well attempt to invoke violent attacks against us, those who support marriage as the union between one man and one woman have the benefit of truth on their side."

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