David Ermold was denied a same-sex marriage license in 2015. Now he’s running to unseat the Kentucky county clerk who refused him.
Ermold reportedly announced Wednesday that he will campaign against incumbent Rowan County clerk Kim Davis. Davis, a longtime employee of the clerk’s office, secured national attention when she was briefly jailed for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples despite a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding their right to marry. Davis announced she would seek re-election last month.
Ermold, an English professor at the University of Pikeville and director of a local gay rights organization, was among the many people who sued Davis in 2015, and he has previously suggested he might take her on. Ermold on Wednesday officially announced he will run against her in 2018, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader.
“I am running to restore the confidence of the people in our clerk’s office and because I believe that the leaders of our community should act with integrity and fairness, and they should put the needs of their constituents first,” Ermold told the paper. “My commitment to Rowan County is to restore professional leadership, fairness, and responsibility to the clerk’s office. I will build upon the successes of the past, and I will seek solutions for the challenges we may still face.”
Davis claimed issuing same-sex marriage licenses violated her religious beliefs. Instead, one of her deputies agreed to issue licenses and continues to do so, according to the paper.
Ermold, meanwhile, married his partner, David Moore, in October 2015.
Ermold is one of four Democrats seeking the nomination to challenge Davis, who changed her registration from Democrat to Republican in 2015, according to the Herald-Leader. He filed to run for clerk on Wednesday as Davis looked on.