- February 5, 2015
Today HRC announced its support for an ethics complaint with the Judicial Inquiry Commission of Alabama seeking the removal of Chief Justice Roy Moore from the state supreme court for violating the obligations of his office.
“Chief Justice Roy Moore is lawlessly disregarding the binding ruling of a federal judge, and he’s encouraging other statewide officeholders to do the same,” said HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow. “Moore’s personal opinions are not at issue here. As a lawyer and as a judge, he has an obligation to follow the law. If he refuses to do so, he should be removed from office.”
Moore continues to double down on a reckless and dangerous pattern of flagrant disregard for the law by urging parties to ignore recent federal court rulings striking down the state’s ban on marriage equality for committed and loving same-sex couples. In an initial letter following the federal judge’s ruling, Moore urged the governor to ignore the ruling as non-binding “judicial tyranny.” Going above and beyond this defiant behavior, he then continued his own judicial activism by writing a letter and memorandum to the state’s probate judges claiming they are not required to follow the order.
The ethics complaint filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center details these recent communications by Moore to Governor Robert Bentley and the state’s probate judges association.
Moore is no stranger to this variety of ethics complaint. He was previously removed by the state’s Supreme Court in 2003 for ignoring the order of a federal court.