A county clerk in Kentucky who was briefly jailed for refusing to issue marriage licenses to gay couples said on Friday that she and her family have switched to the Republican Party because the Democrats no longer represented them.
Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis, 50, who has said her beliefs as an Apostolic Christian prevent her from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, said they had changed parties last week. She was a long-time Democrat in eastern Kentucky.
"My husband and I had talked about it for quite a while and we came to the conclusion that the Democratic Party left us a long time ago, so why were we hanging on?" she told Reuters in an interview at a hotel in Washington, where she has traveled to be feted at a Family Research Council event later on Friday.
Davis also said she did not foresee a problem with the current marriage licenses being issued by her office in Morehead, Kentucky. Critics have charged the altered licenses, which removed her name and title and the name of the county, violate an order issued by US District Judge David Bunning and raise questions about their validity.
"I don't think there should be much of an issue and the judge didn't have any problem accepting the licenses that were issued when I was incarcerated, which had been altered, so I don't see that there should be an issue," she said.
Davis added, however, that if the new licenses became an issue for Bunning, she was prepared to return to jail.
Davis was jailed for five days in September for refusing to comply with Bunning's order to issue licenses in line with a Supreme Court ruling in June that made gay marriage legal across the United States.