Citing ‘Conscientious Religious Objection’ He Claimed Discriminating Against Same-Sex Couples Was a ‘Matter of Conscience’
A Barren County,Â Kentucky family court judge has resigned, according to The Glasgow Daily Times, after a judicial commission began pursuing charges filed after he publicly announced he was refusing to hear adoption cases involving same-sex couples or LGBT people.Â
In April,Â JudgeÂ W. Mitchell Nance toldÂ attorneys they should find another judge when filing cases with LGBT families.Â Judge Nance, who was re-elected to an 8-year term in 2014 after runningÂ unopposed, saidÂ â€œas a matter of conscienceâ€ he believes that “under no circumstance” would “the best interest of the child be promoted by the adoption by a practicing homosexual.”
He also said that while he has never been asked, he would refuse to marry a same-sex couple.
In May, after Nance refused calls to resign amid public protests,Â the ACLU, ACLU of Kentucky,Â Lambda Legal, Kentuckyâ€™s Fairness Campaign, and University of Louisville Law Professor Sam Marcosson jointly filed a complaintÂ for violating Kentuckyâ€™s Code of Judicial Conduct.Â
â€œJudge Nanceâ€™s acknowledgement that he is incapable of being fair to certain individuals because of their sexual orientation and on the basis of a demonstrably false stereotype establishes that he is incapable of performing the essential duties of his office,â€ said William Sharp, ACLU of Kentucky Legal Director. â€œWhile he is certainly free to hold his discriminatory beliefs, the fact that they prevent him from fairly and impartially acting as judge for all Kentuckians mandates that the Judicial Conduct Commission take swift action.â€
Thursday night The Glasgow Daily Times reported Judge Nance had resigned. His resignation, however, is not effective until mid-December.
“His resignation follows formal charges against Nance by the Judicial Conduct Commission after Nance attempted to enter a general order last April preemptively recusing himself from adoption cases involving gay parents,” the newspaper reports.
Nance, 66, wouldnâ€™t say if he resigned because he feared suspension or removal by the commission, pointing instead to his answer to the charges which his attorneys filed with the commission.
â€œI donâ€™t have anything to say any further than what has been said,â€ Nance told CNHI News.
His attorneys go on to say that if the commission requires a formal response to the charges that â€œsame-sex adoptions present a unique crisis of conscience for Judge Nanceâ€ and violate â€œhis conscientious religious objection to a childâ€™s adoption by a same-sex coupleâ€ because of his conviction such adoptions are not in the â€œbest interest of a child.â€
LGBT groups are pleased Nance is leaving.
“Judge Nance must have seen the writing on the wall,” Chris Hartman, Director of the Fairness Campaign, told the Glasgow Times. “He had proven he could not deliver the basic impartiality required by his office when it came to LGBTQ people and their families. His only possible pathway forward was resignation or removal from office.”
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‘Radical Left Marxists’: Trump Launches Attack Hours After Judge Imposes Gag Order
Just hours after New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron imposed a limited gag order and directed Donald Trump to remove his social media post targeting and attacking, by name, the judge’s law clerk, the ex-president Tuesday evening issued an attack targeting the legal system, and apparently, by extension, Attorney General Letitia James.
Judge Engoron’s Tuesday order barred Trump from “posting, emailing or speaking publicly about any of my staff,” as Politico reported. The judge’s gag order did not extend to any officer of the court, witnesses, or anyone else involved in Attorney General James’ $250 million civil fraud case against Trump.
“Consider this statement a gag order forbidding all parties from posting, emailing or speaking publicly about any of my staff,” Engoron said Tuesday afternoon. “Failure to abide by this order will result in serious sanctions.”
Judge Engoron had announced in court: “This morning one of the defendants posted to his social media account a disparaging, untrue and personally identifying post about a member of my staff.”
“Personal attacks on members of my court staff are unacceptable, inappropriate and I will not tolerate them in any circumstances,” Engoron added.
Politico described Trump’s social media post as “a message alleging [the law clerk] ‘is running this case against me.’ The message was pulled from an account on X with fewer than 200 followers. Trump then linked to an Instagram account for Greenfield’s campaign for a judgeship in Manhattan civil court.”
“’How disgraceful! This case should be dismissed immediately!!’ Trump added. He also posted a photo of her alongside Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and referred to her as ‘Schumer’s girlfriend.'”
And while the judge ordered the social media post taken down, there’s nothing that can be done about the email blast Trump sent to “millions” of his supporters that included the post, as The New York Times reported.
Tuesday evening, despite having already been given one gag order, Trump appeared to tear into the legal system and Attorney General Letitia James in a series of false claims.
After claiming James’ civil lawsuit against him was unconstitutional and election interference, Trump wrote the decision to apply that statute to him “was done by Radical Left Marxists design, and is not the America we know.”
“It is so unfair that I am being tried under Section 63(12), which is unconstitutionally being used to punish me because I am substantially leading Crooked Joe Biden in the polls,” Trump wrote on Truth Social. “It is a Consumer Protection Statute, and not meant, at all, for Election Interference purposes, which is what this is all about! Under this Section of the law, I am not even entitled to a JURY (there is no checking of a box alternative!).This was done by Radical Left Marxists design, and is not the America we know. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”
As The New Yorker reported last week, the law Trump is referring to was “passed at the behest of one of” James’ “Republican predecessors, Jacob Javits.”
‘Terrorist Attacks’: Murphy and Cornyn Slam House GOPers Over McCarthy Ouster
After U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and seven of fellow far-right House Republicans voted to oust their own Speaker of the House for supporting a bipartisan vote to keep the federal government of the United States from a shutdown, a powerful Senate Republican and Democrat are both strongly denouncing the work of the few GOP extremists who toppled Kevin McCarthy.
U.S. Senator John Cornyn, a hard-core Republican of Texas and a former member of the Senate Republican leadership team, blasted the eight House Republicans for their “terrorist attack,” and warned it will happen again.
“We saw a similar thing happen to Boehner, Ryan, and now McCarthy. I’m sure the next speaker is going to be subjected to the same terrorist attacks,” Senator Cornyn said, according to HuffPost’s Igor Bobic.
Responding to a Texas radio talk show host from his official social media account, Sen. Cornyn added, “A handful [of] House members just want to blow up the institution and themselves in the process. Sad.”
U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) called the ouster “a deeply embarrassing moment for America. A consequence of a Republican Party that has become so radicalized that it can no longer function as an organized political party.”
“Nobody should be rooting for this circus,” added Sen. Murphy in video recorded as he watched the House voting to remove McCarthy as Speaker. He warned that the ouster of McCarthy will now take the House away from the critical work of keeping the government open after November 17, “instead of working on a budget.” And he warned that no new funds to help Ukraine defend itself against Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war have been authorized.
“These are life and death stakes,” Murphy said, lamenting this “makes us look so weak and foolish around the world.”
Let me tell you about the real world consequences of Kevin McCarthy’s ouster as Speaker. No one should celebrate this day. This level of dysfunction is terrible for America. pic.twitter.com/7NsQrz7Pro
— Chris Murphy 🟧 (@ChrisMurphyCT) October 3, 2023
Watch Sen. Murphy’s remarks above or at this link.
McCarthy Ousted as Speaker in Historic First as Republicans Vow Vengeance Against Gaetz: ‘Kiss My A–’
U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has been ousted as the elected Speaker of the House of Representatives after a weeks-long campaign by his fellow Republican, Congressman Matt Gaetz. The Republican Florida lawmaker vowed over the weekend to put a “motion to vacate” on the House floor, which he did Monday night. Tuesday afternoon McCarthy lost the support of the majority in a full House vote.
No Speaker of the House has ever been ousted by a motion to vacation, according to the Associated Press, until McCarthy.
“The Office of the Speaker of the House of the United States House of Representatives is hereby declared vacant,” the presiding Republican lawmakers declared. The final vote was 216-210.
🚨🚨 BREAKING — THE HOUSE HAS VOTED TO REMOVE KEVIN MCCARTHY AS SPEAKER.
8 Republicans and all Democrats present voted to oust McCarthy after 269 days as speaker.
The House, once again, is in a state of chaos.
— Jake Sherman (@JakeSherman) October 3, 2023
No Democrats voted to support McCarthy as Speaker.
Overall House Republicans are furious with Gaetz, with some vowing to expel him should the House Ethics Committee submit a negative report on their investigation into his alleged, possible sexual misconduct, unlawful drug use, and public corruption.
In addition to Gaetz, other House Republicans who voted to oust McCarthy include Andy Biggs, Ken Buck, Tim Burchett, Eli Crane, Bob Good, Nancy Mace, and Matt Rosendale.
“After talking to a few House Republican lawmakers and aides,” during the vote to oust McCarthy as Speaker, Punchbowl News’ Jake Sherman reported he “would not be surprised to see someone move to have Gaetz expelled from the House Republican Conference.”
U.S. Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) in a profane rant slammed Gaetz, in a recorded video, saying, “You want to come at me and call me a RINO you can kiss my ass! You go around talking your big game and thumping your chest on Twitter. Come in my office and have a debate mother —!”
Chip Roy goes after Gaetz: “You want to come at me and call me a RINO you can kiss my ass! You go around talking your big game and thumping your chest on Twitter. Come in my office and have a debate mother —-!” pic.twitter.com/mk6Qv6PfC6
— Ron Filipkowski (@RonFilipkowski) October 3, 2023
U.S. Rep. Sam Graves (R-LA) help up his phone while delivering remarks against Gaetz, chastising him for fundraising off his efforts to oust McCarthy.
“Using official actions to raise money. It’s disgusting!” he told his colleagues.
Republican Rep. Graves calls out Matt Gaetz for fundraising on speaker fight
“Using official actions to raise money. It’s disgusting!” pic.twitter.com/LgoQWxBiiN
— Sawyer Hackett (@SawyerHackett) October 3, 2023
What happens next? According to The New York Times on Tuesday, “If McCarthy is removed, the House would be paralyzed.”
“A vacancy in the speaker’s chair would essentially paralyze the House until a successor is chosen, according to multiple procedural experts. An interim speaker would be chosen from a list prepared by Mr. McCarthy and his staff at the beginning of the year, but staff intimately familiar with House rules say the role of that person would be to oversee a speaker election and little more.”
As for McCarthy, he has said if removed as Speaker he would not resign from Congress. On Tuesday he suggested he would definitely run again for Speaker.
Watch the videos above or at this link.
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