Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore has filed an appeal of the decision issued by the Court of the Judiciary (COJ) on September 30 to suspend him for the remainder of his term, which runs through January 2019. A new panel of judges will need to convene to hear the case and all the sitting justices should be recused.
The Judicial Inquiry Commission (JIC) previously requested that the Chief Justice be removed from the bench. Under the COJ rules, removal requires a unanimous 9-0 vote by the members of the COJ, which is made up of judges, a lawyer and laypeople. Absent a 9-0 unanimous vote, the COJ cannot remove a judge from the bench. But in an unbelievable violation of the law, the COJ suspended him without pay for the remainder of his term. When his term expires, he will be ineligible to run again for election as judge due to his age. So the suspension until the end of his term is a de facto removal from the bench.
“Liberty Counsel and the Chief Justice have appealed this case to the Alabama Supreme Court. These baseless charges should be dismissed and the Chief Justice should be reinstated,” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “To suspend Chief Justice Moore for the duration of his term is a miscarriage of justice and the same as removal. The COJ lacked the unanimous votes to remove the Chief, so the majority instead chose to ignore the law and the rules. We will continue the fight for justice to prevail in this case.”
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