Rowan County, Kentucky, clerk Kim Davis said on May 20 she refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses in 2015 because she was following her local laws and her interpretation of the Bible, not the landmark ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court (video below).
During an interview with Frank Wright, head of D. James Kennedy Ministries, Davis discussed her fight against same-sex marriage licenses, notes Right Wing Watch.
Wright began the segment by stating that the U.S. Supreme Court could only rule on laws, and not write new laws, meaning its ruling on same-sex marriage wasn't law. Wright also insisted the high court's ruling only applied to the district in which the case originated from.
These same arguments were made by conservatives in 2015. In response, David Vladeck, a professor of law at Georgetown University, told The Atlantic: "The Supreme Court says the Fourteenth Amendment requires states to issue licenses … That is the law of the land. We have something in the Constitution called the Supremacy Clause."
Vladeck also said the district argument doesn't work because the same-sex marriage ruling was a constitutional ruling, not a statutory ruling.
However, Davis agreed with Wright's dubious assertions. She added that her office's statutes against same-sex marriage were still on the books and she followed them.
What Davis was referring to is called "dead letter laws." These laws physically still exist in writing, but are not legally enforceable.
Davis also said she used the Bible against gay couples who cited the U.S. Supreme Court ruling, Right Wing Watch reports:
I was obeying my law. I had couples bring in the whole Supreme Court ruling and I said, 'You know, I really don't need to see this because that's not a law, that's a ruling' [and they'd say] 'Well, why won't you do this?'
And so then I go to the Bible and I'd tell them, [and they'd respond,] 'Don't be reading me the Bible.' Well, you asked why I couldn't issue you a marriage license and I'm explaining to you, I'm showing you why I cannot. They didn't want to hear that though. They wanted to shove that paper down my throat and make me eat it for my dinner.