The gay man who launched an election campaign against anti-gay county clerk Kim Davis after she denied him a marriage licence has lost his bid to unseat her.
Rowan County, North Carolina, clerk Davis famously refused to issues marriage licenses to same-sex couples in 2015, after the US Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriage was legal in all 50 states.
Despite significant backlash, Davis insisted that she would re-run for the position of county clerk for Rowan County in the 2018 election.
One of the men she denied a marriage licence to was David Ermold, who began an election bid for the role of county clerk as a Democratic hopeful in 2017.
Ermold reportedly raised over $200,000 in campaign funds, with many donations made from out of state since announcing his intention to run last November.
Despite this swell of support, Ermold was defeated in Tuesday’s Democratic primary by fellow registered Democrat Elwood Caudill Jr.
In a statement posted to his Twitter account after the results of the primary, Ermold thanked his supporters and stated his commitment to keeping Rowan County inclusive.
“Today, I stand amazed by the outpouring of support for our campaign by both those in Rowan County and by those across the country. Our primary was a truly competitive race, and I am so proud of our accomplishments.
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“We knew from the beginning that we had a difficult task, and while our campaign is coming to a close, our work to reaffirm Rowan County as a diverse and welcoming community has only just begun.”
Ermold continued: “While it is easy to share and grow in our commonalities, we must also work to bridge our differences to find understanding.
“As a community, we may not always agree on every issue, but our community should be one based on fairness and respect.
“Our clerk’s office touches the lives of every person in the community, and we must have leadership dedicated to our needs. Our leadership must be willing to serve ALL our people, and it must value the unique needs of every citizen.”
Following Davis’ refusal to provide marriage licences to gay couples, four couples (two same-sex and two heterosexual) sued Davis over her actions, with help from the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union).
The Apostolic Christian has said that she refused to issue the licenses because same-sex marriage goes against her beliefs.
After she was sent to jail for five days for refusing a federal order to issue same-sex marriage certificates, Davis became a staunch anti-gay marriage campaigner.
Davis has extended her anti-gay campaigning beyond the confines of her constituency since the marriage license controversy.
Alongside the Liberty Counsel, Davis met Romanian campaigners against same-sex marriage in 2017 to discuss the country’s referendum on legalising same-sex unions.