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Tensions stir in Kentucky town after brush with marriage equality spotlight

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The calm that returned to Morehead, Kentucky — home to the county clerk who had refused to issue marriage licenses to gay couples — could be short-lived when Kim Davis returns to work on Monday, along with crowds of demonstrators and the media.

Davis has been absent from work since she was released on Tuesday from a six-day stint in jail for her refusal to issue marriage licenses because it conflicted with her religious beliefs.

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Supporters and critics alike are wondering what Davis will do on Monday, and whether her next move will send her back to jail, this time for a longer stay. A district judge has ordered her not to interfere with her five deputies who have agreed to issue marriage licenses to gay couples.

Before Davis became a rallying point for social conservatives and the debate over gay marriage in the United States, the rural town of 7,000 tucked in the Appalachian foothills was better known as the home of Morehead State University and its 11,000 students.

A walk through the town, where residents, including those in the gay community, as well as students mix freely, finds several banks, barber shops and churches, cafes and even a coffee shop and bookstore.

Jessalyn Fulton, a sophomore, said she met Davis earlier this week after the county clerk came into the Taco Bell where she works, shadowed by an armed bodyguard, and ordered a cantina power burrito.

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In the past, the town and more liberal university have worked out their differences.

In 2013, the city council approved a Fairness Ordinance that extended discrimination protections to gay, bisexual and transgender people for employment and housing after several gay and lesbian students were denied off-campus housing, according to a spokeswoman for the Rowan County Rights Coalition.

But cracks are starting to show in the relationships that have built up over the years. Several business owners in Morehead declined to discuss the issue for fear of upsetting either side.

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Nashia Fife, secretary-elect of the county’s rights coalition, said nerves are fraying. “It’s being seen as personal and it’s really not.”

The day after Davis was jailed, her husband Joe called for a boycott of the university because of its embrace of gays and lesbians.

Morehead State President Wayne Andrews said elected officials should obey the law and do their jobs.

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Puffing on a cigar, across the street from the Fuzzy Duck coffee shop, 77-year-old retiree Robert Littlepage, who moved here about 10 years ago, said he and most of his friends in town wonder whether there is better solution.

“There should have been an accommodation that satisfied both sides, rather than putting it all on her,” he said, pointing to talk about the possibility that her name and authority over the issue could be shifted to a judge or a state department.

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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Wall Street Journal drops a truth-bomb on Trump over his market-destroying trade war: ‘Everyone loses’

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In yet another blast from the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal, the editors looked back at Friday's stock market free fall and pointed the finger directly at President Donald Trump and his "trade-war general" Peter Navarro for being the main culprits.

After Friday's disastrous stock market session that took a major downturn due to the escalation of the trade war -- with China and Trump ordering billions of dollars in new tariffs -- the Journal pointed out that there will be no winners.

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G7 off to a rough start as Trump aides slam host Macron’s agenda

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With President Donald Trump at the latest G7 summit, all eyes are on the interactions between him and French President Emmanuel Macron. The two world leaders started off amicably, exchanging pleasantries, but behind the scenes, things have grown contentious.

According to Politico, Trump officials are railing against Macron, accusing him of trying to "fracture" the summit by steering the negotiations away from trade and into areas like climate change.

This development comes after Trump harshly criticized Macron for enacting a tax on digital services, which could increase costs for American tech companies like Google and Facebook. Trump threatened that if France does not suspend its "unfair" digital tax, "we'll be taxing their wine like they've never seen before." It is a threat that Trump has made repeatedly over the last few weeks whenever he has gotten angry at France.

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A likely recession could doom Trump

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President Donald Trump is worried that there will be a recession before the 2020 election. For once, he is right about something.

This article first appeared in Salon.

"The Economy is strong and good, whereas the rest of the world is not doing so well. Despite this the Fake News Media, together with their Partner, the Democrat Party, are working overtime to convince people that we are in, or will soon be going into, a Recession," Trump tweeted on Friday in a clear attempt to assuage concerns. "They are willing to lose their wealth, or a big part of it, just for the possibility of winning the Election. But it won’t work because I always find a way to win, especially for the people!"

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