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Marriage Equality

WATCH: Mississippi Clerk Refuses to Wed Gay Couples, Quits After 24 Years

WATCH: Mississippi Clerk Refuses to Wed Gay Couples, Quits After 24 Years


Linda Barnette just can't get with the gay 'lifestyle.'

A county circuit clerk in Grenada, Miss., refuses to marry same-sex couples and has resigned her position after nearly a quarter-century with the county.

Following Friday's pro-equality ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court, County Circuit Clerk Linda Barnette handed in her resignation letter.

"The Supreme Court's decision violates my core values as a Christian," she wrote (in all caps). "My final authority is the Bible. I cannot in good conscience issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples under my name because the Bible clearly teaches that homosexuality is contrary to God's plan and purpose for marriage and family. I choose to obey God rather than Man."

Speaking to a local news affiliate, Barnette expounded on her decision (see below). "I would be the one issuing the licenses so it would be like I would be approving of this lifestyle," she said, "and I do not." Barnette's husband was a pastor who previously worked with the Billy Graham Ministries, Towleroad reports.

RELATED: Mississippi's Modern 'Jim Crow' Law Now In Effect

But Grenada isn't the only place same-sex couples are being turned away while seeking marriage licenses. At Mississippi's Simpson County Clerk's Office, Jim Perry and his partner were denied marriage licenses because it reportedly went against the religious beliefs of the clerk there. Other antigay clerks will be heading to Mississippi's state capital of Jackson to speak with the Attorney General about their duties. The state's Democratic attorney general, Jim Hood, previously indicated that clerks would be required to comply with the Supreme Court's ruling.

Meanwhile, Mississippi's Republican Governor, Phil Bryant, was still attempting to enforce the state's ban on same-sex marriage through today, reports BuzzFeed News legal editor Chris Geidner. After a decision from the federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals determined that Hood's office did not have to represent Bryant in the futile effort, Bryant's new counsel reportedly admitted the state's ban on same-sex marriage had been invalidated.

Same-sex couples in several Mississippi counties, including the state capitol in Jackson, however, have been legally marrying since clerks offices opened on Monday, as the Campaign for Southern Equality documented earlier this week.

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