A man refused a marriage licence twice by a county clerk in Kentucky is to run against her for the job.

David Ermold announced his candidacy for the Rowan County clerkship on Wednesday, a month after Kim Davis confirmed she would seek re-election in 2018.

English professor Ermold and his now husband David Moore were refused a marriage licence by Davis twice in 2015. She denied the licence on the grounds of her religious beliefs.

Kim Davis watched David Ermold file his candidacy for Rowan County clerk
(Adam Beam/AP)

Eventually Davis served five days in jail for her refusal to obey a court ruling requiring her to issue licences.

In a strange turn of events Davis, as the clerk for Rowan County, was required to process Ermold’s paperwork declaring his run for office.

Ermold said in a campaign statement that he would “restore professional leadership, fairness and responsibility to the office”.

Ermold isn’t Davis’s only competition. Three other people have also filed to run against her.