Alternate headline: “The Religious Right will be sending out their latest fundraising emails in 5… 4… 3…”
A federal judge has ordered a defiant Kentucky clerk to jail after she refused to issue marriage licenses to gay couples.
U.S. District Judge David Bunning told Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis she would be jailed until she complied with his order to issue the licenses. Davis said “thank you” before she was led out of the courtroom by a U.S. marshal. She was not in handcuffs.
She won’t do that, though. She’ll just play up the Christian Martyr angle and talk about how persecuted she is for being told to do her job.
“The court cannot condone the willful disobedience of its lawfully issued order,” Judge Bunning said. “If you give people the opportunity to choose which orders they follow, that’s what potentially causes problems.”
Judge Bunning said Ms. Davis would be released once she agreed to comply with his order and issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Davis being sent to jail, even temporarily, is one of those events that will have the Religious Right salivating. They’re loving this right now.
Remember: This has nothing to do with her faith. Davis is not being punished for her Christian beliefs. She’s being punished for being a government official who refuses to do the job she signed up to do.
There are people like Mike Huckabee who will inevitably claim Christians are being punished for their beliefs. That’s a lie. Davis is welcome to be a bigot in her church and home. But she has no business stopping gay couples from obtaining legal marriage licenses — in the same county where they pay taxes, no less — just because she has a faith-based hang-up about it.
One upside to her jailing: Since she’s no longer in the office, Rowan County deputy clerks may now be able to issue marriage licenses to all couples (including same-sex ones).
Will update as more information arrives…