Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore has been suspended without pay for the remainder of his term for defying the law (again).
He had been on a temporary suspension, and faced an ethics trial, after telling probate judges in the state they didn’t have to issue same-sex marriage licenses — despite the Supreme Court ruling saying those marriages were legal under the law and government officials couldn’t get in the way of that.
The final judgment states Moore violated six canons of judicial ethics. Those canons are as follows:
- he failed to uphold the integrity and independence of the judiciary
- he failed to avoid impropriety and the appearance of impropriety in all his activities
- failed to respect and comply with the law
- failed to avoid conduct prejudicial of the administration of justice
- failed to perform the duties of his office impartially
- failed to abstain from public comment about a pending proceeding in his own court
Oddly enough, Moore will get to keep his job despite the suspension. The reason? Booting him from the bench required a unanimous decision from the committee and they just didn’t have all those votes. So that makes him a perpetual lame duck Chief Justice until he chooses to resign.
The first time Moore was removed from his position, it was because he installed a Ten Commandments monument in the state courthouse in the dead of night when no one was looking and refused to remove it.
His lawyers say they’ll appeal today’s ruling.
Don’t think for a second, though, that any of this will stop him from trying to impose his Christian will on the citizens. One conservative group’s poll had him leading the pack of 2018 candidates for the state’s gubernatorial elections and there’s no doubt he plans to run.
Moore is the very definition of an activist judge. He ignores the law and pushes his beliefs onto everyone else. Yet all those “religious freedom” groups that complain about Democratic court appointees always seem to give Moore a pass. It’s the very definition of hypocrisy.
(Large portions of this article were published earlier)