The chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court has issued an order barring same-sex marriage, despite last year’s Supreme Court ruling making marriage equality the law of the land.
In his new order, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore claims a previous order issued to probate judges in March remains in effect, and orders the state’s probate judges not to issue same-sex marriage licenses.
The administrative order, provided by the Southern Poverty Law Center and released earlier today, states that probate judges must abide by a state law barring same-sex marriage, despite the Supreme Court’s Obergefell ruling.
In the order, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore writes:
Alabama probate judges have a ministerial duty not to issue any marriage license contrary to the Alabama Sanctity of Marriage Amendment or the Alabama Marriage Protection Act remain in full force and effect.
This is not the first time Moore has used his position of authority to promote his obnoxious and hateful brand of Christian extremism.
In 2003, as Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, Moore refused to remove a monument of the Ten Commandments from the Alabama Judicial Building despite orders to do so from a federal judge. On November 13, 2003, the Alabama Court of the Judiciary unanimously removed Moore from his post as Chief Justice. However, he was re-installed in office in January, 2013.
Writing for Dispatches From the Culture War, Ed Brayton notes:
Moore is a vicious anti-gay bigot and a Christian Reconstructionist who has issued legal rulings saying that gay people should be put in prison or put to death.
In a powerful statement, Richard Cohen, President, Southern Poverty Law Center, declared:
Justice Moore has once again demonstrated that he is unfit to hold office. Despite the fact that Alabama probate judges are under a federal court order prohibiting them from discriminating against same-sex couples in the issuance of marriage licenses, Justice Moore has irresponsibly advised them to do the opposite. He should be removed from office as he was once before for defying a federal court order.
Indeed, Moore is unfit for office. In fact, the man is a moral monster and a Christian extremist with no respect for the rule of law, the federal government, or the U.S. Constitution.
For example, previously, in an appalling display of constitutional ignorance and religious bigotry, Moore declared that the First Amendment only applied to Christians while speaking to a pro-life (forced-birth, anti-choice) group.
While Moore’s absurd and pathetic attempt to stop same-sex marriage in Alabama will fail, the fact that this disturbed and incompetent individual is the chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court is profoundly troubling.
Bottom line: Fueled by an obnoxious religious bigotry, Moore has once again demonstrated that he is unfit for office. He needs to go.