The Texas attorney general told county clerks they could refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples after hearing from religious activists who warned against letting “Sodomites queer our country.”
Emails released as part of an open-records request revealed that Christian conservative activists such as Steve Hotze, a Houston physician and an influential Republican activist, contacted Attorney General Ken Paxton immediately to ask him to fight the ruling, reported The Dallas Morning News.
“Greetings in the name of Christ our King!” Hotze wrote, urging Paxton not to comply with the ruling because it did not specifically order states to do so.
“The illegitimate SCOTUS ruling does not name Texas, so fight those lousy bastards,” said Hotze, president of Conservative Republicans of Texas. “They hate God and want to let the Sodomites queer our country.”
Midland energy executive Tim Dunn asked Paxton the day after the June 28 ruling to assist in the legal defense of any Texas businesses, schools or individuals penalized for resisting the ruling on marriage equality.
“It seems that the AG’s office could represent citizens, churches and schools who … have their constitutional religious liberties attacked — by government,” wrote Dunn, a major contributor to the conservative Empower Texans group. “That at least would take away their ability to simply bankrupt everyone with legal fees.”
Paxton issued a non-binding opinion the day of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling saying that state officials could invoke religious liberty laws to avoid helping same-sex couples marry, as long as other government workers could assist them.