Sunday, September 06, 2015

More on the Kim Davis Case; Kentucky Attorney General Allowed a Conscience Exemption for Not Carrying out His Duties as Regards Same Sex Marriage

County Clerk Kim Davis
Lots of interesting things about the Kim Davis case are coming out. Things you can easily get from legal documents she filed, but no one in the media is reporting on.

Davis is not asking that same sex couples not be issued marriage licenses. Only that her name not be required on the licenses. This is a remedy provided for regarding other Kentucky licenses.
Importantly, Davis is not claiming a substantial burden on her religious freedom or free speech rights if someone else authorizes and approves a SSM license devoid of her name. Davis is also not claiming that her religious freedom or free speech rights are substantially burdened if she must complete an opt-out form to be exempted from issuing SSM licenses, as Kentucky law already permits for other licensing schemes. (p. 18)
Davis suggests a whole list of easy fixes. (pp. 30-31)

There's a whole lot of not inventing the wheel going on here. What she asks for has already been granted on the same sex marriage issue to another high Kentucky official.

Governor Steve Beshear
Apparently only Kim Davis is not allowed a religious/conscience exemption from fulfilling her duties regarding same sex marriages. Kentucky Governor Steven L. Beshear not only accepted Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway's refusal to carry out his legal duties in 2014, but actually paid over $200,000 to hire other people to do those duties. And the issue was the same as in Kim Davis' case, same sex marriage. However, Conway's conscience was on the other side. He didn't believe he could in good conscience support "discrimination" against same sex couples.
Notably, Gov. Beshear did not provide the same ultimatum to Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway (“Atty. Gen. Conway”) when he refused to defend the Kentucky Constitution and democratically-enacted marriage law. VC, ¶¶ 15, 34. According to Atty. Gen. Conway in his tearful and prayer-induced proclamation at the time, “There are those who believe it’s my mandatory duty, regardless of my personal opinion, to continue to defend this case…I can only say that I am doing what I think is right. In the final analysis, I had to make a decision that I could be proud of – for me now, and my daughters’ judgment in the future.” VC, ¶ 14 (emphasis added). Gov. Beshear did not force Atty. Gen. Conway to abandon his “inescapable” conscience and instead hired outside counsel to represent Kentucky in defending its own Constitution and
democratically-enacted laws—which cost the Commonwealth upwards of $200,000. VC, ¶¶ 14-15, 34-36. (p. 7, footnote 6)
Attorney General Jack Conway
Attorney General Jack Conway, who himself claimed a conscience exemption and refused to do his duties, is threatening to prosecute any county clerks who do not obey the same sex marriage licensing requirements.
In addition to his unmitigated “approve or resign” rule, Gov. Beshear has ominously
declared that “the courts” will deal with county clerks who do not comply with his SSM Mandate. See VTC, ¶ 35. Moreover, immediately after issuance of the SSM Mandate, Atty. Gen. Conway even threatened possible legal action against county clerks who did not comply with the SSM Mandate, even seemingly inviting this very lawsuit against Davis: “Any clerk that refuses to issue marriage licenses is opening himself or herself to potential legal liability and sanctions. Any couple or person denied a license may seek remedy in federal court, but should consult with a private attorney about their particular situation.” See, e.g., Several county clerks defy same-sex marriage ruling, refuse to issue marriage licenses, Lexington Herald-Leader, June 29, 2015, available at (last accessed August 28, 2015); Steve Beshear and Jack Conway: On refusing marriage licenses,, June 30, 2015, available at (last accessed August 28, 2015). (pp. 27-28, footnote 18)
Actually, according to the New York Times, seven Democratic state Attorney Generals declined to do their duty. But, the Times did not call for their resignation or jailing.
Mr. Conway became the seventh state attorney general — all Democrats — to refuse to defend laws prohibiting same-sex marriage, generating criticism by Republicans that they were ignoring their duties and thwarting the will of voters who had enacted the bans.
This resulted in "criticism" not a call for jailing or resignation. Who are the hypocrites here (beside the media which is fine with public officials refusing to fulfill their sworn duties as long as the media also opposes the same issue)?

H/T MaxRedline


OregonGuy said...


T. D. said...

Yep, OG. It's not about people performing required job duties. It's about forcing people to act as you tell them to. This judge is not required to perform marriages. It's optional, but he's being investigated because he doesn't believe the way those in charge and those in the media believe.

If he is unfit to rule on cases with gay people, all the judges and officials on the other side aren't fit to rule on cases regarding Muslims, Jews or Christians who believe marriage should be one man/one woman.

Thanks for the link.

MAX Redline said...

Day just said, "Screw it - I won't do any marriages". And in his case, performing such ceremonies is entirely optional; there's no law or rule that says he has to do it. This "investigation" isn't going to go anywhere, much as some would like it to. More Willamette Valley idiocy.

T. D. said...

That should be the case, Max. But, his lawyers said the investigation has been going on for the better part of a year. So, it hasn't been an in and out thing. And part of the investigation is on his decision to stop performing weddings because he didn't want to participate in a same-sex wedding. Why deciding not to perform wedding ceremonies for any reason is a matter for investigation is beyond me. It's obviously an intimidation tactic meant to send a message to people all the way down the food chain. If they don't measure up in political correctness they will be investigated for any and all possible charges.

They allowed him to set up a legal defense fund.

MAX Redline said...

Yep, I know the "investigation" has been going on for quite some time, but as it's a nondiscriminatory policy, it won't go anywhere. I agree that it's an intimidation tactic that may well frighten people lower down on the food chain. Disgusting, but not unexpected in the current environment.

T. D. said...

I think you're right, Max. But, they will make it as uncomfortable and expensive as they can for Day.

MAX Redline said...

They already are: he had a photo of Hitler along with other WWII memorabiia in his office. Clearly, he's a Nazi.

T. D. said...

Sigh. How about judges who have pictures of slave owners and people who let slavery grow in the U.S. on their walls? Or judges who have pictures of the man who personally sent more than 100,000 Japanese Americans to internment camps simply because they were Japanese? Washington, Jefferson, Franklin Roosevelt. And those photos aren't even overlayed with memorabilia from people who fought against their actions.

I saw the list of "charges". Ridiculous. Lying about someone grabbing him from behind? I guess you had to be there.