Chief Justice Roy Moore of the Alabama Supreme Court says that despite his recent order against probate judges issuing marriage licenses for same-sex couples (see Gavel Grab), “I am not defying the United States Supreme Court.”
Moore made the assertion in an interview with The Los Angeles Times. He reasoned that the U.S. Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling last year applies only to Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee, and that the Alabama Supreme Court has yet to make its own decision on the effect of that ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges.
Numerous legal experts and many activists disagree with Moore, and the newspaper headlined its article, “Gay marriage order puts spotlight again on the ‘Ayatollah of Alabama.'” A “Remove Roy Moore” rally sponsored by Equality Wiregrass and the Human Rights Campaign, was held in Montgomery, Al. on Tuesday, according to Al.com.
While previously serving as chief justice, Moore became well-known in 2003 for refusing to follow a court order to remove a Ten Commandments monument from the state judicial building. The Alabama Court of the Judiciary, a panel of judges and lawyers that monitor judicial conduct, removed him. He was re-elected in 2012.