Our D-I-V-O-R-C-E was denied today
Tennessee judge denies couple's divorce, because gay marriage
Another elected official has challenged the Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage — this time, a judge in Hamilton County, Tennessee.
Chancellor Jeffery Atherton denied the divorce petition of Thomas and Pamela Bumgardner, who filed for divorce last September citing irreconcilable differences. Among several listed reasons for denying the petition, Atherton noted that, in his view, the recent Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage left Tennesseeans “incompetent to define and address such institutions as marriage and, thereby, at minimum, contest divorces.”
Atherton's decision comes amid a flurry of other state officials challenging the June 27 ruling, most prominently county clerk Kim Davis in Kentucky.
While the attorneys for the plaintiffs declined to comment to the Chattanooga Times Free Press, other members of the Chattanooga legal community expressed skepticism over the ruling. “I don't know for sure, but I suspect the U.S. Supreme Court did not intend to preempt divorce law,” one attorney told the paper.
As to where that leaves the Bumgardners, who remain married against their will? Atherton is optimistic: "Hopefully they can reconcile."