A Mississippi county clerk who has been issuing marriage licenses for decades has resigned from her position before being forced to act against her religious beliefs.
Former Grenada County clerk Linda Barnette’s decision was prompted by last week’s U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriages throughout all 50 states.
“I choose to obey God rather than man,” Barnette wrote in her one paragraph resignation letter, according to Fox News.
“I am a follower of Christ and I believe strongly that the Bible is my final authority,” her letter continued. “The Bible teaches that a marriage is to be between a man and a woman. Therefore, because of the recent ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court, I can no longer fulfill my duties as Circuit Clerk and issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.”
She appeared on Fox News Wednesday night and told host Sean Hannity that she’d been anticipating the move since the high court took up the issue.
“I was waiting for the decision from the U.S. Supreme Court, and when that came down I knew I could no longer fulfill my duties as circuit clerk,” she said.
Hannity reminded her that Mississippi was considering getting out of the marriage business altogether.
“Would you be able to get your job back if they did?” he asked.
She told him that wasn’t in the cards.
“They’ve already appointed one of my deputies that’s been with me for 22 years,” Barnette explained. “And so I probably would not.”
She said that same-sex marriage “goes against everything I believe — my core values.” She added, “It’s a man and a woman — that constitutes marriage.”
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