Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Republican, has sided with a judge who has refused to marry gay and lesbian couples.

Justice of the Peace Dianne Hensley of Waco sued the Commission on Judicial Conduct after it issued her a warning last year for refusing to marry gay couples and continuing to marry opposite-sex couples.

In response to the 2015 Supreme Court case that struck down state laws and constitutional amendments that prohibited same-sex marriage, Paxton issued a nonbinding opinion in which he argued that judges with religious objections could not be forced to officiate the marriages of gay couples.

Paxton's office has said that it will not defend the Commission on Judicial Conduct, leaving the state agency to find outside representation, the Houston Chronicle reported.

“We believe judges retain their right to religious liberty when they take the bench,” a spokesman for the attorney general's office said in a statement.

Last year, Paxton reiterated his opinion on whether clerks and judges with religious objections could refuse gay couples seeking to marry.

“There is a First Amendment right to free exercise that is sort of standing alongside this newly-minted right to same-sex marriage,” Paxton said during an appearance on The Chris Salcedo Show. “The First Amendment doesn't go away just because the Supreme Court created a new right.”