By Steve Bittenbender
A Kentucky county clerk petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday for an emergency order allowing her to continue to deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples, a move coming two days after a federal appeals court rejected her request.
In a related move, a federal judge refused to extend a stay of his own ruling requiring the clerk to furnish marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples while she appealed on the grounds that her religious faith overrides her duties as a public servant.
U.S. District Judge David Bunning said earlier in August that Kim Davis had to live up to her responsibilities as the Rowland County clerk despite her religious convictions, and he issued a preliminary injunction requiring her to issue marriage licenses.
Bunning put his order on hold through Aug. 31 to give Davis an opportunity to ask the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for a longer stay, which the appellate court denied on Wednesday. The circuit court found Davis had little chance of prevailing on the merits of her case.
Davis contends that to approve marriage licenses for same-sex applicants would violate her deeply held religious belief that matrimony is between one man and one woman.
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