Republican presidential hopeful Ted Cruz has voiced his unwavering support for Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis, who was jailed for her refusal to issue gay marriage licenses due to her religious convictions. He has also encouraged Christians to join him in standing with Davis, who he says is being persecuted for her faith.
"Today, judicial lawlessness crossed into judicial tyranny. Today, for the first time ever, the government arrested a Christian woman for living according to her faith. This is wrong. This is not America," the Texas senator wrote in a statement released on Thursday.
"I stand with Kim Davis. Unequivocally. I stand with every American that the Obama Administration is trying to force to choose between honoring his or her faith or complying with a lawless court opinion."
As reported by the Gospel Herald, Davis, the clerk at Rowan County, was found in contempt of court Thursday by U.S. District Court Judge David Bunning after she refused to issue the marriage licenses.
Bunning said that Davis will be released from prison once she has agreed to comply with the court order and proceed to issue marriage licenses. However, Davis explained that the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on June 26 that legalized gay marriage nationwide conflicts with the vows she made when she became a born-again Christian.
"I promised to love Him with all my heart, mind and soul because I wanted to make heaven my home," Davis told the judge before a federal marshal escorted her out. "God's moral law conflicts with my job duties. You can't be separated from something that's in your heart and in your soul."
Before she appeared in court Thursday, Kim Davis told The Kentucky Trial Court Review that she was prepared to go to jail for her beliefs.
"I would have to either make a decision to stand or I would have to buckle down and leave," she told the monthly publication in a radio interview. "And if I left, resigned or chose to retire, I would have no voice for God's word," calling herself a vessel that the Lord has chosen for this time and place.
In continuing his comments, Sen. Cruz charged that every politician who is "tut-tutting that Davis must resign" is guilty of defending a "hypocritical standard."
"Where is the call for the mayor of San Francisco to resign for creating a sanctuary city - resulting in the murder of American citizens by criminal illegal aliens welcomed by his lawlessness?" he asks. "Where is the call for President Obama to resign for ignoring and defying our immigration laws, our welfare reform laws, and even his own Obamacare?"
Sen. Cruz argues that those who are persecuting Davis clearly believe Christians should not be serving in public office, as believers would have to disregard their religious beliefs to avoid being penalized.
"Kim Davis should not be in jail," he writes. "We are a country founded on Judeo-Christian values, founded by those fleeing religious oppression and seeking a land where we could worship God and live according to our faith, without being imprisoned for doing so."
In concluding his statement, Cruz called upon "every Believer, every Constitutionalist, every lover of liberty" to join him in standing with Davis.
"Stop the persecution now," he writes.