After a federal judge ordered Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis to jail for failing to issue same-sex marriage licences, his efforts to create an alternative means for the county to comply with a court order to issue the licenses came up short.
U.S. District Court Judge David Bunning summoned Davis’ six deputy clerks to appear in his courtroom on Thursday, wanting them all to confirm their willingness to issue same-sex marriage licenses. While five of the six said they would be willing to do so, Nathan Davis, Kim’s 21 year old son, said he would not. The judge chose not to hold him in contempt.
Some of the clerks questioned whether they had the legal authority to issue licenses without the county clerk’s approval, which the judge conceded may be an issue.
Ms. Davis indicated that she will not grant her deputies the authority to issue licenses under her name, all but assuring she will be spending more time in jail.
As an elected official, Kim Davis cannot be fired. However, she can be impeached by the Kentucky legislature, which is not due to reconvene until after the new year. Democrat governor Steve Beshear has directed Davis to issue the licenses, but has resisted calling a special legislative session for the purpose of impeaching her or changing current law to grant authority to other county officials to issue licenses. Regardless, it is not clear if the legislature would vote to impeach Davis, whose stand is popular particularly in her part of the state. (Read more from “After Kentucky Clerk Was Ordered to Jail, Her Son Stood up in a Huge Way” HERE)