No hearing for suspended Chief Justice Roy Moore, federal judge dismisses suit

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A federal judge has dismissed the lawsuit filed by suspended Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore against the Judicial Inquiry Commission (JIC) that filed charges against him in May.

U.S. District Court Judge W. Harold Albritton threw the suit out in an order issued Thursday morning.

Wednesday, the same judge had cancelled the previously scheduled Aug. 4 hearing on the JIC’s motion to dismiss Moore’s lawsuit.

Albritton explained all parties involved had come to an agreement regarding the issues listed in the court filings and that a hearing was not necessary.

“The voters in the State of Alabama adopted a far-ranging and comprehensive new Judicial Article to the State’s Constitution, Article VI, a part of which created a method of dealing with allegations of misconduct by any of the judges of the State,” Albritton stated in his opinion. “It created a Judicial Inquiry Commission, with authority to investigate and bring complaints of misconduct against a judge, functioning in a manner similar to a grand jury. A Court of the Judiciary was created to try and determine any such complaints brought and an adverse decision by that court could be appealed to the Supreme Court of Alabama.”

The JIC is considering judicial ethics charges that could lead to Moore’s permanent removal from office. In July the JIC argued Moore should be immediately and permanently removed from office.

Albritton stated in his opinion that the process should continue without federal court interference, except under limited circumstances.

“He (Moore) has chosen not to allow the state courts to determine his federal constitutional challenges, but instead to ask this federal court to act,” Albritton wrote. “This court, out of respect for the state court’s proceedings for determining discipline of the state’s elected judges, in the manner provided by the state’s own constitution, declines to do so.”

Moore, a conservative Christian Republican, opposes same-sex marriage on the basis of faith and the law. In January, he issued an administrative order to state probate judges that said state laws against gay marriage remained in place months after the U.S. Supreme Court had effectively legalized gay marriage nationwide.

In May, the JIC filed judicial ethics charges against him for that order. Moore then sued the JIC saying it violated his rights by suspending him when it filed the ethics charges.

A hearing is set for Aug. 8 on the ethics charges before the Alabama Court of the Judiciary. Moore continues to seek a dismissal of those charges.

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3 Comments

  1. Re: “In July the JIC argued Moore should be immediately and permanently removed from office.”

    I’m glad Moor’es lawsuit got tossed. He should be TOO. Immedieately, if not sooner.

    And, Alabamians should wake the heck UP and stop electing religionists as judges.

  2. Re: “Moore, a conservative Christian Republican, opposes same-sex marriage on the basis of faith ….”

    He’s perfectly free not to HAVE one then. He doesn’t GET to make that decision for OTHER people who are also free to hve their own “faith” and beliefs.

    Re: ” In January, he issued an administrative order to state probate judges that said state laws against gay marriage remained in place months after the U.S. Supreme Court had effectively legalized gay marriage nationwide.”

    Only “two months”??? Piffling compared to the THIRTY THREE YEARS that the equally unjust anti-miscegenation laws “remained in place” after the Loving decision.

    Alabama – the ‘slow learner’ of America. It’s not something of which to be proud.

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