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Alabama Chief Justice Suspended Over Gay Marriage Stance

  • VOA News

FILE - Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore in Montgomery, Ala., Jan. 6, 2016. Moore was suspended for his efforts to block same-sex marriage, counter to a nationwide ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Roy Moore, chief justice of the Alabama state Supreme Court, was suspended for his efforts to block same-sex marriage, counter to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that effectively legalized same-sex marriage nationwide in 2015.

A state judicial oversight commission filed ethics charges against Moore Friday, saying the controversial judge abused the power of his office. The accusations could lead to his removal from office.

The charges stem from an administrative order Moore issued early this year to probate judges, telling them to follow Alabama law banning same-sex marriage. This came after a federal judge ordered the state's probate judges not to enforce the ban.

Late Friday, Moore issued a statement saying he does not believe the oversight commission has the authority to take such actions against him.

In 2003, Moore was ousted from his position as chief justice by the same body for disobeying a federal order to remove a huge monument of the Bible's Ten Commandments he had placed on the grounds of the judicial building.

Alabama voters elected Moore to the same office nine years later.