The Kentucky clerk who is defying a federal judge's ruling ordering her to issue marriage licenses to all qualified couples has turned to the Supreme Court, asking Justice Elena Kagan to place the ruling on hold as she pursues an appeal.

Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis is among the handful of Kentucky clerks who are defying the Supreme Court's June ruling striking down gay marriage bans in all 50 states.

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday turned down Davis' request for a stay.

(Related: Kentucky clerk who won't issue marriage licenses to gay couples facing misconduct charge.)

In her application for an emergency stay, Davis' lawyers argue that her “conscience forbids her from approving a SSM [same-sex marriage] license – because the prescribed form mandates that she authorize the proposed union and issue a license bearing her own name and imprimatur.”

“[Davis] holds an undisputed sincerely-held religious belief that marriage is a union between a man and a woman, only. Thus, in her belief, SSM is not, in fact, marriage.”

“[A] person who objects to SSM based upon religious beliefs … should not be forced to issue by her authorization and under her name a license to a same-sex couple 'to join together in the state of matrimony.' That searing act of personal validation would forever, and irreversibly, echo in her conscience – and, if it happened, there is no absolution or correction that any earthly court can provide to rectify it,” the lawyers continued.

Davis argues that gay couples could receive a marriage license from a nearby county. Plaintiffs counter that they have a right to get a marriage license in the county where they live, work and pay taxes.