July 2, 2015

Casey Davis is a County Clerk in Kentucky who refuses to issue same-sex marriage licenses. Not only does he refuse to issue them, he won't quit his job either so someone who isn't so squeamish about doing what they swore to do can get the job done.

And boy howdy, are the excuses stupid. Yes, stupid. Not going to even try and be nice about that one.

When pressed by Hayes on the conflict between being a public servant who swore an oath and his refusal to honor that oath, Davis said, "I believe the oath I swore to said marriage was between one man and one woman. That's what I held my hand to."

I went and checked the wording of the Kentucky oath of office for County Clerks. I was most interested in finding the part where it requires them to swear to one man and one woman for marriage licenses. Here it is, in its entirety:

I do solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be) that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of this Commonwealth, and be faithful and true to the Commonwealth of Kentucky so long as I continue a citizen thereof, and that I will faithfully execute, to the best of my ability, the office of ______________________, according to law; and I do further solemnly swear (or affirm) that since the adoption of the present Constitution, I, being a citizen of this State, have not fought a duel with deadly weapons within this State, nor out of it, nor have I sent or accepted a challenge to fight a duel with deadly weapons, nor have I acted as second in carrying a challenge, nor aided or assisted any person thus offending, so help me God.

I see nothing in that oath about one man and one woman, but I certainly see some words in there about solemnly swearing (on a Bible, presumably) that the person will uphold the U.S. Constitution, which holds that marriage between two people of the same gender is legal across the whole country, even in their county.

Rather than simply obey the law, Mr. Davis has decided that because he doesn't want to be discriminatory to anyone, he'll deny marriage licenses to everyone.

Which is fine, but he doesn't get to collect a paycheck for violating the law. If he cannot bring himself to follow it, he needs to quit and let someone else take care of things for him.

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