- Views & Opinions
The Alabama Court of the Judiciary suspended anti-LGBT Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore for the remainder of his term due to his unethical actions against marriage equality.
The nine-member Court of the Judiciary found Moore unanimously guilty of all six charges brought against him.
Moore will remain on the bench, but will not receive a salary and he will be unable to make any legal decisions.
His term is up in 2018. At that point, he will not be able to run for the justice again in Alabama because he will be past the office’s age restriction.
“Roy Moore has flagrantly and willfully attempted to block marriage equality at every turn in Alabama, using his position of power to push a personal, radically anti-LGBTQ agenda,” said Eva Kendrick, state manager for the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBT civil rights group. “We are thrilled that justice has been done today and he will no longer be able to use the bench to discriminate against people he had taken an oath to protect.
Kendrick continued, “Roy Moore’s bigoted rhetoric and unethical actions harmed LGBTQ Alabamians and emboldened those who would seek to hurt us further. We hope this is a turning point for our state. We must focus on electing politicians and judges who will move us forward, not backward.”
HRC Alabama initiated the #NoMoore campaign to remove Moore from the Alabama Supreme Court for “his blatant legal and ethical failings.”
HRC Alabama also called out Moore’s discriminatory behavior with a billboard in downtown Montgomery, and held rallies and press conferences outside each of Moore’s ethics hearings — including the final hearing on Sept. 28.
Last year, HRC and other civil rights organizations joined the Southern Poverty Law Center’s ethics complaint filed with the Judicial Inquiry Commission of Alabama and seeking Moore’s removal for violating the obligations of his office.
The complaint described how Moore urged Gov. Robert Bentley and members of the Alabama Probate Judges Association to ignore federal court rulings striking down the state’s ban on marriage equality.
The court has now ruled that Moore violated the canons of judicial ethics by ordering the probate judges to defy the federal court injunction requiring them to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples on a non-discriminatory basis.
This is the second time in 13 years that Moore has been sanctioned as a result of ethics complaints filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
SPLC president Richard Cohen, in a news release, said, “The Court of the Judiciary has done the citizens of Alabama a great service by suspending Roy Moore from the bench. He disgraced his office and undermined the integrity of the judiciary by putting his personal religious beliefs above his sworn duty to uphold the U.S. Constitution.
“Moore was elected to be a judge, not a preacher. It’s something that he never seemed to understand. The people of Alabama who cherish the rule of law are not going to miss the Ayatollah of Alabama.”