Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy
Moore on Tuesday appealed his suspension.
Tuesday was the last day to file an
appeal to a special Alabama Supreme Court appointed to hear his
The nine-member Alabama Court of the
Judiciary in September suspended Moore without pay for the remainder
of his term, which ends in 2019. Because of his age, 69, Moore
cannot run for the office again.
Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore suspended for remainder of
Moore issued an administrative order to
the state's 68 probate judges months after the Supreme Court found in
Obergefell that gay and lesbian couples have a constitutional
right to marry. He told the judge's that Alabama's marriage ban was
still in effect because it had been upheld by an Alabama Supreme
Court ruling issued four months before the Supreme Court's decision.
Moore has argued that his January 6,
2016 order was meant to provide a “status” report for judges and
was not a call to defy the Supreme Court on Obergefell.
“I wasn't telling them to do
anything,” Moore said during his trial. “I would not defy any
federal court order.”
Some counties, including Mobile County,
among the busiest in the state, temporarily stopped issuing marriage
licenses to all couples in response to Moore's order.
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the
nation's largest LGBT rights advocate, called Moore's move
“This is the desperate final act of
Roy Moore’s failed campaign to restore his position on the Alabama
Supreme Court after flagrantly and willfully attempting to block
marriage equality at every turn,” said Eva Kendrick, state manager
for the Human Rights Campaign, Alabama. “Roy Moore is wasting the
court’s time and Alabama taxpayer money, and we urge members of the
Court of the Judiciary to stand by their decision.”
Moore argues in his appeal that the
Court of the Judiciary exceeded its authority in suspending him for
the remainder of his term, effectively removing him from office only
because he is too old to seek re-election. He argues that he was
suspended because the court did not have the unanimous vote needed to
remove him from office.
Moore has a long record of opposing
same-sex marriage, including claiming that such unions go
against God, will lead
to incest, polygamy and child
abuse, and will “destroy
the United States.”
Moore was ousted from the bench by the
same court in 2003 for refusing to remove from public property a
monument of the Ten Commandments which he had commissioned. Voters
returned him to the bench a decade later.