The Interesting Connection Between Kim Davis and the Phillies

Kim Davis Jim Bunning

There is a surprisingly strange Philadelphia connection with the Kim Davis debacle that is playing out in Kentucky, and it has to do with our hometown baseball team.

As pointed out in the article “‘He Has Guts’: David Bunning, the Same-Sex Marriage Decision’s Unlikely Enforcer” from The Washington Post, the United States District Judge who sent Ms. Davis to jail is the son of Jim Bunning, a former player for the Philadelphia Phillies, who is best known for a pitching a perfect game on Father’s Day, 1964.

The senior Bunning was a native of Kentucky, a well-known Republican, and father to nine children, one of which, David, was appointed by former President George W. Bush in 2002 as a federal judge. It was David Bunning who handed down the decision against Davis last week, and even earlier ordered her to issue the same-sex marriage licenses.

The writers for The Washington Post summarize the significance of Bunning’s rulings to the greater landscape of gay rights across party lines:

“Notably, it has been the decisions of a Republican judge appointed by a Republican president, George W. Bush, in a conservative state that have halted the latest effort to use religious freedom objections to the ruling. ‘Personal opinions, including my own, are not relevant to today,’ Bunning, a federal district judge, told Davis and the courtroom Thursday. ‘The idea of natural law superseding this court’s authority would be a dangerous precedent indeed.’”

In short, it looks like another Bunning is being championed as a winner in a way that is just as significant as throwing a no-hitter.