Current Affairs

The top court in this state could sack this judge who keeps refusing to marry gays

Joseph McCormick August 13, 2016
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A case will go to court against a judge who in 2014 refused to perform same-sex marriages ever.

Back in 2014, circuit court magistrate and municipal judge Ruth Nelly said shew would never marry a same-sex couple.

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She said: “When law and religion conflict, choices have to be made.”

And after the Supreme Court made a sweeping ruling legalising same-sex marriage last year, Nelly continued to refuse to perform same-sex marriage.

The Wyoming Commission on Judicial Conduct and Ethics filed a complaint against her, saying she had violated six rules of judicial conduct.

She was accused of prejudice based on sexual orientation, improper behaviour for the interview in which she declared her opposition to same-sex marriage and refusing to uphold the rule of law.

But despite an offer to drop the case against her, if she agreed not to refuse to marry gays, but she declined to accept it, saying she would continue to fight against same-sex marriage.

The commission back in May suggested the Wyoming Supreme Court intervene in the case, and despite Neely’s attorney making a request to throw out the case, the court on Friday said it would be heard.

Unlike in other cases such as the famed case around Kim Davis, the Rowan County Clerk who went to jail for contempt after continually refusing to marry gays, judges are required to perform marriages.

Neely doesn’t have a deputy who can step in if they refuse, like Davis, and in the Rowan County case, the latter was still jailed, despite arguing that her deputy would marry gays so she didn’t have to.

Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore will face a trial on grounds that he abused his authority to block same-sex weddings, it was announced earlier this week.

Related topics: judge, ruth neely, US

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