Very good news. In an interview with DC Agenda, D.C. Superior Court Chief Judge Lee Satterfield, who oversees the court’s Marriage Bureau, says clerks and other court officials cannot decline to perform same-sex weddings on religious or moral grounds, as has been the case in other jurisdictions that have marriage equality.
AGENDA: To the extent that you can comment, in other states officials are allowed to decline to perform a same-sex marriage if it is against their religious beliefs. Can the officials do that here?
SATTERFIELD: You know the law, as I understand it in the District of Columbia, does not allow that when it comes to employees of the court — it does for clergy and others. It allows them to decline. It doesn’t allow for our folk to do so. While I don’t discuss personnel matters, what I will say is this: We expect to have anyone doing and officiating weddings to be officiating all weddings.
During the six months that same-sex marriage was legal in California, some county registrars declined to perform same-sex weddings. And in the United Kingdom: A self-described "Christian" and North London registrar who refused to perform gay civil partnerships because they were "sinful" won a landmark discrimination suit. British registrars now have the right to refuse to perform gay partnerships.
"Equality" means that everyone is treated the same. Bravo to D.C. Superior Court Chief Judge Lee Satterfield for laying down the law.