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Kentucky Clerk Who Was Jailed For Homophobia Just Got Kicked Out Of Office

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So, the midterms are finally over. The Republicans made some gains in the Senate but no real change there. Crucially, though, the Democrats managed to take back the House of Representatives, which makes the prospect of the next two years under Trump slightly less horrifying. There were lots of smaller, fascinating victories all over the country in these elections, and this is one of them.

Back in 2015, a Kentucky county clerk called Kim Davis was jailed for being incredibly bigoted. Specifically, she refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Despite a little thing called federal law which compelled her to do so.

All the way back in 2004, voters in Kentucky voted by a large majority to reject marriage equality. An amendment to the state Constitution was approved so that marriage would be defined as being solely between a man and a woman.

But, eleven years later in June 2015, the US Supreme Court overturned that when it ruled that the 14th amendment to the US Constitution actually gives same-sex couples the exact same marriage rights as heterosexual couples. So, despite what people in Kentucky might think, gay couples everywhere had the right to get married just the same as everyone else.

Davis disagreed so strongly with this ruling that she was willing to sacrifice her job and her freedom by committing a felony to express her opposition. Quite simply, when asked to issue marriage licences to same-sex couples, she straight-up refused.

As anybody with more than a handful of brain cells could have predicted, it wasn’t long before she was sued by both straight and gay couples for being a massive bigot. And denying people their Constitutional rights, of course. She flat-out refused to cooperate with a court order and so was sent to jail for five days. A judge also ruled later on that the couples’ legal fees of approximately $225,000 would have to be paid by Kentucky taxpayers.

Fast-forward to 2018 and this week Republican incumbent Kim Davis was defeated by Democratic challenger Elwood Caudill Jr. in the election for clerk of Rowan County in northeastern Kentuky, meaning she will not serve a second term in office.

Caudill got 54 per cent of the vote and Davis just 46 per cent. The Democrat’s 4,210 votes were superior to the Republican’s 3,566.

Caudill was gracious after his win. Here’s what he had to say:

“I believe that as a community we must continue to work together toward a more prosperous and cohesive Rowan County.”

Good on you, Sir. It might not have been a Blue Wave, but the small victories really do matter.


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