Kim Davis Faces $233K In Legal Fees After Losing Marriage Battle

Kentucky clerk’s fight against same-sex marriage could be expensive.

Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples in Rowan County last year, might have to pay the legal fees and costs of her opponents.

Last month the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky filed a motion in federal court seeking to recover $233,058 in attorneys’ fees and other expenses associated with fighting Kim Davis over marriage equality.

Last year the Kentucky county clerk and Christian extremist refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses because of her “sincerely held religious beliefs.” Rather than issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples after the U.S. Supreme Court made marriage equality the law of the land, Davis refused, and eventually went to jail, making her a Christian martyr for some, and the darling of right-wing Christian conservatives like former Republican presidential hopefuls Ted Cruz and Mike Huckabee.

Both Davis and Rowan County are named as defendants in the lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky.

However, the Lexington Herald-Leader reports that Rowan County is now refusing to pay the costs, saying that Davis was acting on her own behalf, and did not act on behalf of Rowan County when she refused to issue marriage licenses,

Arguing that Davis is responsible for the costs, Jeffrey C. Mando, an attorney for Rowan County, said:

County clerks are not employees of the county, but instead are the holders of elective office pursuant to the Kentucky Constitution.

ACLU of Kentucky Legal Director William Sharp explained in a statement that he wants the fees to send a message about the high price of violating people’s rights:

Courts recognize that when successful civil rights plaintiffs obtain a direct benefit from a court-ordered victory, such as in this case, they can be entitled to their legal expenses to deter future civil rights violations by government officials.

Bottom line: Ignoring the law and denying basic rights because of “sincerely held religious beliefs” is not only immoral, it can also be expensive.

Kim Davis (Image via Facebook)
Kim Davis (Image via Facebook)

ACLU Sues Kim Davis And Rowan County For $233K In Legal Fees

Kentucky clerk’s stand for anti-gay Christian hate could be expensive.

Earlier this week the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky filed a motion in federal court seeking to recover $233,058 in attorneys’ fees and other expenses associated with fighting Kim Davis over marriage equality.

Last year the Kentucky county clerk and Christian extremist refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses because of her “sincerely held religious beliefs.”

The Advocate reports the ACLU of Kentucky is seeking to recover $233,058 in attorneys’ fees and other expenses associated with the lawsuit it brought on behalf of several couples last year after Davis shut down marriage license operations in Rowan County, where she is the elected county clerk.  

Last year, rather than issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples after the U.S. Supreme Court made marriage equality the law of the land, Davis refused, and eventually went to jail, making her a Christian martyr for some, and the darling of right-wing Christian conservatives like former Republican presidential hopefuls Ted Cruz and Mike Huckabee.

Both Davis and Rowan County are named as defendants in the motion, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky. But “the motion does not call for Davis to personally pay the fees,” ACLU spokesman Ryan Karerat told BuzzFeed.

ACLU of Kentucky Legal Director William Sharp said Monday that he wanted the fees to send a message about the high price of violating people’s rights. He explained in a statement:

Courts recognize that when successful civil rights plaintiffs obtain a direct benefit from a court-ordered victory, such as in this case, they can be entitled to their legal expenses to deter future civil rights violations by government officials.

Sharp added:

By filing today’s motion, we hope to achieve that very objective — to send a message to government officials that willful violations of individuals’ rights will be costly.

However, Liberty Counsel, the Christian advocacy group that represented Davis in court, called the attempt to recoup fees a “Hail Mary” from the ACLU.

Mat Staver, the group’s chairman, said the ACLU is not entitled to attorney’s fees because the case was ultimately dismissed. In a statement Staver said:

County clerks are now able to perform their public service without being forced to compromise their religious liberty. The case is now closed and the door has been shut on the ACLU’s attempt to assess damages against Kim Davis.

Bottom line: Ignoring the law and denying individuals basic rights because of “sincerely held religious beliefs” is not only immoral, it can also be expensive.

Kim Davis (Image via Carter County Jail)
Kim Davis (Image via Carter County Jail)

Justice Kennedy To Kim Davis: Do Your Job Or Resign

Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy says public officials who do not wish to follow the Court’s marriage equality decision should either do their job or resign.

Kennedy, the author of June’s landmark marriage equality decision, made the comment during an appearance at Harvard Law School Thursday, in response to a question from a student in the audience.

The student asked Kennedy:

Would you say that there are any state or federal officials with authority to act according to her own judgment of the truth of new insights or of the soundness of the court’s constitutional interpretation, or would it be illegal for any federal official or state official to enforce or to act according to the old understanding of life and the Constitution that she still judges to be the truth of the matter?

Kennedy responded in a roundabout way by discussing the government of Adolf Hitler during Germany’s Third Reich, and alluding to the fact that very few judges resigned from the Nazi German government.  In his answer, Kennedy expressed admiration for officials who do resign when asked to do something they find morally repugnant.

Kennedy said:

Great respect, it seems to me, has to be given to people who resign rather than do something they view as morally wrong, in order to make a point.

Kennedy continued:

However, the rule of law is that, as a public official in performing your legal duties, you are bound to enforce the law.

In other words: Do your job or resign.

It should be noted that in the course of the discussion Kim Davis, the anti-gay Kentucky county clerk who said her religious beliefs will not allow her to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, and went to jail for defying a court order to do her job and issue said licenses, did not come up by name, nor did any of the other public officials around the nation who have similar objections to same-sex marriage.

However, the implication of Kennedy’s words for Davis and other anti-gay public officials cannot be ignored.

Bottom line: While Kennedy seems sympathetic to the dilemma Davis finds herself in while trying to reconcile her extreme religious beliefs with her duties as an elected public official, he makes it clear that public officials must do their duty and obey the law, or they must resign.

(H/T ThinkProgress. The exchange on the marriage equality decision begins around the 51-minute mark.)

[youtube]https://youtu.be/ZHbMPnA5n0Q?t=50m42s[/youtube]

(Image via Screen Grab)
(Image via Screen Grab)

Kentucky Governor Throws Kim Davis Under The Bus

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear is refusing to even meet with a group of Christian conservatives demanding a religious accommodation for anti-gay Rowan County clerk Kim Davis.

A small group of influential Kentucky pastors representing  the “Family Foundation of Kentucky,”  was given the cold shoulder on Tuesday after demanding to meet with Governor Beshear.

The group was seeking a meeting with the governor to ask him for a special legislative session so that lawmakers can enact accommodations for county clerks like Davis who refuse to provide marriage licenses for same-sex couples because of their sincerely held religious beliefs.

However, the governor refused to meet with the group, and has repeatedly stated that he refuses to spend taxpayer money to call the legislature into special session.

Instead the group met with the governor’s chief of staff, Larry Bond.

Beshear spokesman Terry Sebastian said Bond told the group that the governor has no legal authority to relieve county clerks of their statutory duties through an executive order.

Sebastian, the Communications Director for the Office of Governor Beshear, issued the following statement:

The Governor’s chief of staff, Larry Bond, met with a group of ministers today. The Governor’s office is always happy to meet with community leaders and citizens and hear their ideas. Mr. Bond reminded the group, however, that the legislature has placed the authority to issue marriage licenses on county clerks by statute, and the Governor has no legal authority to relieve them of their statutory duty by executive order. The General Assembly will convene in just 12 weeks and can make any statutory changes it deems necessary at that time. The Governor sees no need to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayers’ money calling a special session of the General Assembly when 117 of 120 county clerks are doing their jobs.

The Rev. Randy Smith, a spokesman for the anti-gay Christian group, said the pastors were not pleased with the response.

Good.

Bottom line: Governor Beshear is right to refuse to meet with the anti-gay pastors, and is right to refuse to call a special legislative session to make accommodations for Davis. As for Davis, she needs to do her job or resign.

Kim Davis (Image via Carter County Jail)
Kim Davis (Image via Carter County Jail)

 

Kim Davis Offered $500K To Do Interracial Lesbian Porn

If anti-gay Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis ever gets tired of trying to deny same-sex marriage licenses to nice gay couples she has a career waiting for her in the adult entertainment industry.

Death and Taxes reports the bigot from Rowan County, Kentucky, has been offered $500,000 to participate in an interracial lesbian porn scene.

A new press release from “The Dogfart Network” is offering Davis half a million dollars to have sexual relations with a non-Caucasian woman.

The following is the press release in full via Death and Taxes:

With all the controversy surrounding Rowan County, Kentucky clerk Kim Davis’ refusal to issue same sex marriage licenses even after the Supreme Court of the United States made same sex marriage the law of the land, The Dogfart Network which is the leading online destination for Adult Interracial content is offering the Holy Kim Davis a chance at redemption.

The undisputed kings of interracial porn are dangling $500k to star in a scene for their site ZebraGirls.com, which is one of 23 sites in the companies vast Adult Entertainment Empire. ZebraGirls.com specializes in Lesbian Interracial Erotica.

“We here at Dogfart have always believed in equality. We have interracial sites, gay sites, straight sites, and we think Kim Davis has been appalling,” said a Dogfart Spokesman. “We are giving her a chance at a redemption. We are willing to drop half a million bucks for Kim to come out to our studio and shoot an Interracial Lesbian scene for our network.”

The offer will stand for the next week. She is also welcome to bring her family with her on an all expense paid vacation.

The press release is dated October 6.

No word if Davis is considering the lucrative offer. However, if she takes a pass on porn, she will most likely make a fortune preaching her toxic brand of anti-gay Christianity to like minded bigots.

Last month, Republicans cheered as the anti-gay county clerk was honored for “her determined resistance to same-sex marriage” at the Values Voter Summit in Washington D.C.

 

(Image via Facebook)
(Image via Facebook)

 

 

Busted: Pope Francis Held Secret Meeting With Kim Davis

The Vatican confirms Pope Francis held a secret meeting with anti-gay Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis.

According to reports, the Vatican reached out to Davis weeks before the pope’s visit to arrange the secret meeting, and show his support for the anti-gay county clerk who went to jail in a futile attempt to prevent same-sex marriage.

Davis and her husband Joe met with the pope at the Vatican Embassy in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 24.

The New York Times reports:

Ms. Davis and her husband, Joe, were sneaked into the Vatican Embassy by car on Thursday afternoon. Francis gave her rosaries and told her to “stay strong” …

In an exclusive interview with ABC News Davis discussed the secret meeting with the Pope:

I was crying. I had tears coming out of my eyes. I’m just a nobody, so it was really humbling to think he would want to meet or know me.

Earlier this week Pope Francis suggested that government officials like Kim Davis should be allowed to refuse to perform government tasks that violate their sincerely held religious beliefs, claiming that anyone who prevents others from exercising their religious freedom is denying them a “human right.”

Pope Francis told reporters aboard his flight from Philadelphia to Rome government officials have a “human right” to refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses if it offends their sincerely held religious beliefs.

Francis is wrong. For the record: It is not a human right to refuse to do your job, and for Pope Francis to suggest otherwise is an obnoxious bit of sophistry that cheapens the notion of human rights.

Nobody is forcing Kim Davis, or any other government worker, to issue same-sex marriage licenses. If Kim Davis or any other government worker is unhappy with the conditions of their employment they are free to resign and find a more suitable occupation.

For the pope to suggest that government workers have a right to discriminate against same-sex couples is to pervert the notion of human rights in the service of ugly religious bigotry. In so doing Francis denies the very real human rights of the same-sex couple wishing to marry.

The fact that Pope Francis endorses bigotry and discrimination in the name of sincerely held religious beliefs should come as a surprise to no one. Francis is an extreme and unsavory social conservative with a pleasant smile, and an awesome public relations machine.

Yet beneath the telegenic superficialities, Francis is ugly: anti-gay, anti-trans, anti-birth control, anti-woman, and anti-free speech. He is, in essence, Mike Huckabee in a dress, just another obnoxious and dangerous religious extremists with a friendly smile and a warm handshake.

As Friendly Atheist notes:

When It Comes to Gay Rights, Pope Francis is No Different from Kim Davis

Make no mistake: Pope Francis is a man who holds views that should be repugnant to all reasonable people. Yet many reasonable people, including progressives, refuse to acknowledge these hard truths about Francis. The denial, and the excuse making, is depressing.

As for Kim Davis, Republicans cheered last weekend as the anti-gay county clerk was honored for “her determined resistance to same-sex marriage” at the Values Voter Summit in Washington D.C.

Bottom line: Pope Francis has bamboozled and hustled many progressives who continue to praise and make excuses for a man they should condemn. But, wait, oh look, Francis is kissing another baby, awww…

(Portions of this article were previously published here)

(Image via Wikimedia)
(Image via Wikimedia)

Pope Francis: Kim Davis Has A Right To Deny Same-Sex Marriage Licenses

Pope Francis says government officials have a “human right” to refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses if it offends their sincerely held religious beliefs.

Speaking aboard his flight from Philadelphia to Rome, Pope Francis suggested that government officials like Kim Davis should be allowed to refuse to perform government tasks that violate their sincerely held religious beliefs, claiming that anyone who prevents others from exercising their religious freedom is denying them a “human right.”

NBC reports:

The pontiff was asked: “Do you … support those individuals, including government officials, who say they cannot in good conscience, their own personal conscience, abide by some laws or discharge their duties as government officials, for example when issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples?”

He did not refer specifically to Davis in his reply, saying: “I can’t have in mind all the cases that can exist about conscientious objection … but yes, I can say that conscientious objection is a right that is a part of every human right. It is a right. And if a person does not allow others to be a conscientious objector, he denies a right.”

Francis added: “Conscientious objection must enter into every juridical structure because it is a right, a human right. Otherwise we would end up in a situation where we select what is a right, saying, ‘this right that has merit, this one does not.'”

Asked if this principle applied to government officials carrying out their duties, he replied: “It is a human right and if a government official is a human person, he has that right. It is a human right.”

For the record: It is not a human right to refuse to do your job, and for Pope Francis to suggest otherwise is an obnoxious bit of sophistry that cheapens the notion of human rights.

Nobody is forcing Kim Davis, or any other government worker, to issue same-sex marriage licenses. If Kim Davis or any other government worker is unhappy with the conditions of their employment they are free to resign and find a more suitable occupation.

For the pope to suggest that government workers have a right to discriminate against same-sex couples is to pervert the notion of human rights in the service of ugly religious bigotry. In so doing Francis denies the very real human rights of the same-sex couple wishing to marry.

The fact that Pope Francis endorses bigotry and discrimination in the name of sincerely held religious beliefs should come as a surprise to no one. Francis is an extreme and unsavory social conservative with a pleasant smile, a warm bedside manner, and an awesome public relations machine.

Beneath the telegenic superficialities, Francis is anti-gay, anti-trans, anti-birth control, anti-woman, and anti-free speech. He is, in essence, Mike Huckabee in a dress, just another obnoxious and dangerous religious extremists with a friendly smile and a warm handshake.

Make no mistake: Pope Francis is a man who holds views that should be repugnant to all reasonable people. Yet many reasonable people, including progressives, refuse to acknowledge these hard truths about Francis. The denial, and the excuse making, is depressing.

As for Kim Davis, Republicans cheered this weekend as the anti-gay county clerk was honored for “her determined resistance to same-sex marriage” at the Values Voter Summit in Washington D.C.

(Image via Wikipedia)
(Image via Wikipedia)

GOP Honors Kim Davis At Values Voter Summit

Republicans cheer as Kim Davis is honored for “her determined resistance to same-sex marriage” at the Values Voter Summit in Washington D.C.

The anti-gay county clerk from Kentucky who went to jail in a futile attempt to prevent same-sex marriage was honored with the 2015 “Cost of Discipleship Award” Saturday night at the Values Voter Summit in Washington D.C.

While presenting the award, Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, compared Davis to such historical figures as Abraham Lincoln, Rosa Parks, and Martin Luther King. Perkins said:

Whether it was Abraham Lincoln asserting the Constitutionally unsettled nature of the Dred Scott decision; Rosa Parks refusing to sit at the back of a public bus or Martin Luther King risking the … call of police dogs to end legal segregation, our nation has been ennobled and enriched by historic citizens who declare their unwillingness to accept rulings and statutes that conflict with the laws of nature and with nature’s God.

Perkins also said:

Kim Davis should not be an outlier. Kim Davis should not be something that surprises America. There should be Kim Davises in every elected office, at every level, who say ‘No’ to judges who redefine the revealed truth of God.

Receiving the award, Davis was greeted with a long, standing ovation. Davis, shouting to be heard over the cheering crowd of Republicans, declared:

I am only one. But we are many.

The Hill reports that the award ceremony, held at the Values Voter Summit in Washington D.C.’s Omni Shoreham Hotel, followed a day of speeches by conservatives including Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump, Sen. Ted Cruz, and Ben Carson.

Just hours prior to appearing at the Values Voter Summit, Davis told the media that she had officially left the Democratic Party to become a Republican.

In a statement issued Saturday, her lawyer, Mat Staver, said:

She has come to the conclusion that the Democratic Party has left her. She has decided to switch her voter registration. However, the issue of religious freedom in this case is not a partisan issue. It is neither Republican nor Democrat. It is an inalienable right and what makes America the land of liberty.

Staver said Davis “has been a lifelong Democrat but has received no support from the Democratic Party or leaders.”

Davis deserves no support for her bigotry. The fact that the Democratic party refused to support Davis, while the GOP chooses to cheer and award her anti-gay bigotry, offers a stark and telling moral distinction between the two political parties.

Indeed, the fact that Republicans choose to celebrate and honor Davis indicates a profound moral failure, and is but one of many reasons why decent and reasonable people should not support the GOP.

Bottom line: Davis should not be honored for violating her oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution, and should not be honored for prohibiting her office from issuing marriage licenses to gay couples in repeated violation of court orders.

In addition, by celebrating Davis for her religious bigotry at the Values Voter Summit, Republicans fail to honor both human decency and the US Constitution.

[youtube]https://youtu.be/w-E-9HCZqug[/youtube]

(Image via Screen Gab)
(Image via Screen Gab)

Kim Davis Cries, Tells ABC She’s Been Called A Hypocrite

A faux martyr shares her pain: Appearing on ABC News, anti-gay Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis cries and says she’s been called a hypocrite and a homophobe.

Speaking with ABC News’ Paula Faris today in an interview in Morehead, Kentucky, a tearful Davis broke down when asked “What’s hurt you most?”

Davis replied:

What people say about me does not define who I am. That’s everybody’s opinion and that’s everybody’s right.

I’ve been called Hitler, I’ve been called hypocrite, I’ve been called a homophobe.

I’ve been called things and names that I didn’t even say when I was in the world. Those names don’t hurt me. What probably hurt me the worst is when someone tells me that my God does not love me or that my God is not happy with me, that I am a hypocrite of a Christian.

For the record, Davis is a hypocrite and a homophobe. And if a god did exist, that god would no doubt reject her bigotry and prejudice.

Earlier this month Davis spent five days behind bars for refusing to issue same-sex marriage licenses — something she is legally obligated to do under state and federal law.

After returning to work last week, Davis said she would continue to refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses, while also claiming that any same-sex marriage licenses issued by her deputy clerks would be “unauthorized.”

And late last week multiple media outlets reported that Davis violated a federal judge’s order against interfering with the issuance of marriage licenses by altering license forms to remove her name.

More of Paula Faris’ interview with Davis for ABC will air tomorrow on “Good Morning America” and “The View.” Davis is scheduled to also appear with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly on The Kelly File on Sept. 23.

Watch the video below:


ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos

(Image via Screen Grab)
(Image via Screen Grab)

Report: Kim Davis Violated Judge’s Order

Busted: Reports indicate anti-gay Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis violated a federal judge’s order against interfering with the issuance of marriage licenses by altering license forms to remove her name.

The Associated Press is reporting that lawyers for Rowan County Deputy Clerk Brian Mason are arguing that Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis disobeyed a federal judge’s order by removing her name from the county’s marriage license forms.

On Friday, Mason’s attorney told the judge that when Davis returned to work Monday she “confiscated all the original forms” and replaced them with forms that deleted her name, the name of the county and all references to the deputy clerks.

Richard Hughes, the attorney for deputy clerk Brian Mason, said:

It also appears to this counsel those changes were made in some attempt to circumvent the court’s orders and may have raised to the level of interference against the court’s orders.

Mr. Mason is concerned because he is in a difficult position that he continues to issue the licenses per the court’s order, which had some remote questionable validity. But now with these changes may in fact have some substantial questions about validity.

The new form has Mason’s name and a place for him to write his initials but not his signature.

In addition, in a separate filing, attorneys for the gay couples who initially sued Davis said the alterations “do not comply” with the court’s order to not interfere with her employees who issue the licenses.

When Davis returned to work last Monday after being released from jail she said she would continue to refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses while also claiming that any same-sex marriage licenses issued by her deputy clerks would be “unauthorized.”

Earlier this month Davis spent five days in jail for refusing to obey a federal judge’s ruling that she issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Davis, an Apostolic Christian, believes same-sex marriage is a sin and cited “God’s authority” in refusing to issue the same-sex marriage licenses.

Mat Staver, the attorney who is representing Kim Davis, claims a same-sex marriage licenses is like a license to “sodomize children.”

Kentucky law specifies the rules for the form that county clerks must use, and the changes made by Davis appear to be at odds with many of them. 

As for Davis, her release was conditional on her not interfering with the issuance of the marriage licenses. By altering the forms, she seems to have violated the conditions of her release.

(Image via Twitter)
Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis (Image via Twitter)

 

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