Alabama Supreme Court upholds suspension of Chief Justice Roy Moore

The ruling states the facts of the case are "undisputed"

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WKRG), BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The Alabama Supreme Court has upheld the suspension of Chief Justice Roy Moore ahead of his political announcement Wednesday afternoon.

The ruling began by stating the facts of the case are “undisputed", ruling that he urged state probate judges to defy the federal courts on gay marriage in Alabama.

The sitting justices recused themselves from Moore’s appeal, which was heard by an Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission.

Moore’s fate was in the hands of specially appointed judges who were selected at random after his colleagues on the state’s highest court recused themselves, and these judges upheld both the findings that Moore violated judicial ethics with his actions and his suspension for the remainder of his term. The judges found “clear and convincing evidence” that Moore urged Alabama’s probate judges to defy the federal courts on same-sex marriage.

Many believed his press conference was called to announce a Senate run, but suspended Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore surprisingly announced very little.

Moore instead chose to blast the Alabama Supreme Court system and the judges responsible for his suspension for defying the federal courts on gay marriage in the state.

“This ruling is based on an administrative opinion,” said one of Moore’s attorneys.

“Today I remain Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court,” Moore proclaimed. “It’s a suspension, not a removal… a clear disregard of the people who elected me to this office.”

On Jan. 6, 2016, six months after the highest court in the nation ruled that gays and lesbians have a fundamental right to marry, Moore issued a memo to the state’s 68 state probate judges saying that a 2015 Alabama Supreme Court order to refuse marriage licenses to gay couples remained in “full force and effect.” The probate judges at the time of Moore’s memo also were under a federal judge’s order to stop enforcing the state’s gay-marriage ban following the U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

The Alabama Court of the Judiciary, the panel that disciplines judges, ruled in September that Moore violated judicial ethics by urging judges to defy clearly established law as well as the direct federal court order.



Moore has sought to return to active service in some capacity, even exploring a return to the Alabama Supreme Court.

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