MOREHEAD, KY – Kim Davis, the former Kentucky county clerk who gained national attention in 2015 for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, will be asking the court to reverse the verdict in the case brought against her by David Ermold. Ermold, one of the individuals denied a license by Davis, filed a lawsuit against her for violating his constitutional rights. The case resulted in a judgment against Davis, who was ordered to pay Ermold and his partner damages and attorney fees.
Davis, who served as the Rowan County clerk, will argue for a reversal of the verdict before the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Her legal team will claim that the judgment was unjust and violated her rights under the First Amendment. They will also assert that Davis had qualified immunity as a public official.
The case dates back to 2015 when Davis refused to issue a marriage license to Ermold and his partner, David Moore. At the time, same-sex marriage had recently been legalized nationwide, but Davis cited her religious beliefs as the reason for her refusal. The denial sparked a legal battle and made Davis a polarizing figure in the fight for LGBTQ+ rights.
Although Davis has since left her position as county clerk, the lawsuit against her continued. In 2019, the U.S. District Court ruled in favor of Ermold, finding that Davis had violated his rights. The judge ordered Davis to pay damages and attorney fees, which were later determined to amount to around $225,000.
This appeal is not the first time Davis has sought to overturn the verdict. In 2017, the same court rejected Davis’ argument for qualified immunity. However, her legal team now believes they have a stronger case. They will contend that the verdict set a dangerous precedent that threatens religious freedom and the rights of government officials to operate according to their beliefs.
The outcome of the appeal will have implications beyond Davis’ case. It will influence the ongoing debate surrounding religious freedom versus anti-discrimination laws and shed light on the boundaries of public officials’ obligations when it comes to personal beliefs.
In conclusion, Kim Davis will be appealing the verdict that found her liable for violating the rights of a same-sex couple by refusing to issue a marriage license. Davis, a former county clerk, argues that her religious beliefs and qualified immunity should protect her from the judgment. The appeal will have wider implications for the balance between religious freedom and anti-discrimination laws.