Same-Sex Couples Receive Marriage Licenses in Kentucky as Clerk Kim Davis … – NBCNews.com
A tearful and joyous gay couple left a Kentucky county clerk’s office with a marriage license on Friday morning, while the clerk who runs the office remained behind bars because she refused to issue it herself.
James Yates and William Smith Jr. were first in line at the Rowan County clerk’s office after a federal judge had Kim Davis jailed Thursday for defying his order to issue same-sex marriage licenses in compliance with a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision.
One of Davis’ deputies issued the license to the couple, then shook their hands.
A crowd of supporters erupted in cheers as the couple left the courthouse.
Yates told reporters he was “relieved and happy.”
Davis, the Rowan County clerk and an Apostolic Christian, has said granting licenses to same-sex couples would infringe on her religious beliefs. But District Court Judge David Bunning held her in contempt of court on Thursday and ordered her deputy clerks to start issuing licenses to gay couples.
Five of the six deputies agreed to comply. The lone holdout was her son, Nathan Davis.
Davis’ husband, Joe Davis, told NBC News Friday morning that his wife wouldn’t resign and was prepared to stay in jail for “as long as it takes.”
“It’s not a defeat. Some may say it is, but it’s not a defeat. It’s a setback,” Joe Davis said. “It ain’t over. It’ll still be a fight.”
He and Kim Davis’ lawyers have questioned whether the licenses issued Friday without her authorization would be valid. The county attorney, who was present in court on Thursday, said they would. The judge, however, didn’t comment on their validity.
Related: Couple Suing Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis Over Marriage License Plan to Wed Friday
Bunning said Davis could remain in jail for at least a week, but he is expected to file paperwork Friday explaining what it would take for her to be released from jail.
Joe Davis blasted Bunning for putting his wife behind bars.
“He’s no different than a bully in high school or out here in the street,” Davis said.
Bunning upheld the Supreme Court’s decision in June to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide. Last month, after Kim Davis was sued for contempt, Bunning wrote that the state was merely forcing her to do her job within the law.
But Joe Davis said his wife had done her job.
“Just because five Supreme Court judges …Read More