ASHLAND, Ky. (AP) — A defiant county clerk went to jail Thursday for refusing to issue marriage licenses to gay couples, but five of her deputies agreed to end the church-state standoff in Rowan County, Kentucky.
U.S. District Judge David Bunning said he had no choice but to jail Kim Davis for contempt after she insisted that her “conscience will not allow” her to follow federal court rulings on gay marriage.
“God’s moral law conflicts with my job duties,” Davis told the judge before she was taken away. “You can’t be separated from something that’s in your heart and in your soul.”
The judge later tried to keep Davis out of jail after all, saying she could go free if her staff agreed to comply with the law and she agreed not to interfere.
But Kim Davis rejected the offer, choosing jail instead.
With that, the hearing ended, and gay and lesbian couples vowed to appear at the Rowan County clerk’s office yet again Friday, to see if the deputy clerks keep their promises.
“We’re going to the courthouse tomorrow to get our marriage license and we’re very excited about that,” said April Miller, who has been engaged to Karen Roberts for 11 years.
As word of Davis’ jailing spread outside the federal courthouse, hundreds of people chanted and screamed, “Love won! Love won!”