Commission: Judge Day should be removed for refusing to marry sa - KPTV - FOX 12

Commission: Judge Day should be removed for refusing to marry same-sex couples

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Judge Vance Day Judge Vance Day
SALEM, OR (KPTV) -

A state commission is recommending a local judge be taken off the bench after allegations he refused to marry same-sex couples.

Marion County Judge Vance Day is facing 13 allegations, including screening wedding applicants to determine if they were gay.

Now, the Oregon Commission on Judicial Fitness and Disability is recommending Judge Day be taken off the job. The commission held a two-week long hearing back in November.

Judge Day admitted instructing his staff to direct gay couples to other judges last spring, because he did not want to perform same-sex marriages due to his religious beliefs.

Oregon judges are not required to perform marriages, and Day's attorney believed this is the core reason the judge is facing the other allegations.

"He simply told his staff, who then told others and then the commission decided we'll make you the guinea pig for our test case to find out whether this does or does not violate any judicial canon," said Attorney Ralph Spooner.

The commission called the judge's screening a discriminatory practice, and said the misconduct didn't stop there. The other allegations included hanging a collage containing a portrait of Adolf Hitler in the courthouse, acting with a lack of boundaries at his son's college soccer game, and allowing a man convicted of felony DUII to handle a gun in his presence.

Day's spokesman says the judge will defend those First Amendment rights and his innocence before the Oregon Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court will ultimately make the decision whether or not Judge Day remains on the bench.

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