Mat Staver, who represented Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore in an ethics trial that recently ended in his suspension from the court, said yesterday that the verdict in the case shows that “we’re seeing the breakdown of the rule of law” in America that will eventually lead to the “dissolution of the entire republic.”
Moore had attempted to stop federal marriage equality rulings from taking effect in his state, later making the flimsy excuse that he was merely providing judges in the state with a “status update” on the law, a claim that the state’s Court of the Judiciary pointed out had been contradicted by Staver’s own words.
Staver was the guest on VCY America’s “Crosstalk” program when a listener called in to ask, “If Judge Roy Moore can be suspended because of a frivolous complaint against him that has no merit, why doesn’t Liberty Counsel file frivolous complaints against all the judges on the Supreme Court and have the Supreme Court wiped out, and the legislature will obviously have to do something about it.”
Staver, the founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, responded that that strategy would never work “because the deck is stacked” against groups like his and the Southern Poverty Law Center, which filed an ethics complaint against Moore, would “throw the rules out” to go after him.
“So what happens here is when the rule of law is thrown out and when people don’t abide by the rule of law and they make it up as they go, then the outcome is predetermined,” he said. “That is the problem that ultimately breaks down the entire freedom and democracy that we have, in terms of our representative form of government, I should say. It breaks down the whole system.”
“In fact,” he continued, “Thomas Jefferson said this: ‘The seeds of dissolution lies in the judiciary.’ What does he mean by that? He means that if the judges, if the courts, don’t restrain themselves and we the people don’t restrain them within their confined duties, then that’s where the seeds of dissolution of the entire republic are. And it will grow and grow and grow and grow, and eventually it will dissolve the entire republic of the United States of America. And that’s what we’re seeing, we’re seeing the breakdown of the rule of law, and when they make it up as they go, it doesn’t really matter. So that’s the problem that we have in this case.”
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, famous for having lost his seat on the court in 2003 when he defied a federal order to remove a Ten Commandments monument from the state judicial building, has been sanctioned yet again by the state’s Court of the Judiciary, which ordered today that Moore be suspended without pay for the remainder of his term in office, this time for defying federal court decisions on marriage equality.
The Court of the Judiciary’s ruling is a brutal smackdown of the attempts by Moore and his attorney, Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver, to justify the chief justice’s efforts to stop marriage equality from taking effect in his state.
The court’s judges make clear in the ruling that their decision on Moore’s case has nothing to do with their opinions about the Obergefell ruling, which they note “some members of this court did not personally agree with or think was well reasoned.”
However, they reject Moore’s recent attempt to claim that his January order requiring state probate judges to defy Obergefell and refrain from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples was nothing more than a “status update” on the law. In fact, they note that a press release from Staver himself the day the order was issued completely contradicts that claim:
Chief Justice Moore’s arguments that his actions and words mean something other than what they clearly express is not a new strategy. In 2003, this court’s order removing Chief Justice Moore quoted the following testimony from him before the [Judicial Inquiry Commission]:
“I did what I did because I upheld my oath. And that’s what I did, so I have no apologies for it. I would do it again. I didn’t say I would defy the court order. I said I wouldn’t move the monument. And I didn’t move the monument, which you can take as you will.”
Just as Chief Justice Moore’s decision that he “wouldn’t move the monument” was, in fact, defiance of the federal court order binding him, a disinterested reasonable observer, fully informed of all the relevant facts, would conclude that the undeniable consequence of the January 6, 2016, order was to order and direct the probate judges to deny marriage licenses in direct defiance of the United States Supreme Court in Obergefell and the Strawser injunction.
Indeed, to see that the January 6, 2016, order can be reasonably read as requiring defiance of the United States Supreme Court and the district court in Strawser, we need to look no further than a press release issued by Mat Staver—Chief Justice Moore’s own counsel in these proceedings and one of the counsel of record in API—that was issued the same day as the January 6, 2016, order. In that press release, which solely addressed the January 6, 2016 order, Staver asserted:
“In Alabama…state judiciaries…are standing up against the federal judiciary or any one [sic] else who wants to come up with some cockeyed view that somehow the Constitution now births some newfound notion of same-sex marriage.”
Chief Justice Moore’s contention that the only purpose and plausible reading of the January 6, 2016, order is that of a “status update” is entirely unconvincing.
In fact, in a public press release this morning after the ruling came down, Staver claimed again that Moore’s order was “merely a status report"and, ironically, accused the court of throwing “the rule of law out the window.” However, in an email to Liberty Counsel supporters, he declared, “Liberty Counsel upholds 'just' laws—and the moral law of God. In Alabama and across America, in state judiciaries and legislatures, Liberty Counsel's legal team is standing against the federal judiciary, resisting tyrannical rule, and upholding the moral law of God.”
UPDATE: Moore released a statement saying “This was a politically motivated effort by radical homosexual and transgender groups to remove me as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court because of outspoken opposition to their immoral agenda.”
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore is currently facing trial before the state’s Court of the Judiciary after a judicial ethics panel called for his removal from the bench due to his efforts to defy the federal courts on marriage equality.
Moore is being represented by Liberty Counsel attorney Mat Staver, who also represented Kentucky clerk Kim Davis in her efforts to defy the Supreme Court’s Obergefell decision.
In an interview with an Alabama Christian radio station yesterday, Staver insisted that the state’s Judicial Inquiry Commission is seeking the “death penalty” for Moore in the sense that removing him from the bench would “kill his career.”
Bob Crittenden, the host of “Meeting House” on the Alabama-based Faith Radio, asked Staver if the court could choose to take a less severe action against Moore than removing him from his post, which Staver said would be like a prosecutor asking for a first-degree murder charge and then changing her request when that doesn’t work out.
What the commission is asking for, he said, “is total removal, not anything less, not suspension, not punishment, not reprimand—total removal. They’re asking for the highest penalty. They’re asking, if you will, for the death penalty, in that sense, to kill his career, end his career. And I don’t think they can punt and go back to some lesser issue.”
He added that the process of being charged and suspended from his job has been punishment enough for Moore.
If past experience is any indication, being removed from the bench would far from “kill” Moore’s career. Back in 2003, he was removed from the state supreme court for flouting an order to remove a 10 Commandments statue from the state judicial building, which he followed up with an activist career, a number of political campaigns, and ultimately his reelection to the court.
Fresh from a week of anti-abortion protests in Wichita, Kansas, where they held an “ ecclesiastical court” holding the Supreme Court in violation of the law of God, activists affiliated with Operation Save America have descended on Montgomery, Alabama, to rally in support of Chief Justice Roy Moore as he faces ethics charges over his defiance of the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling.
As Moore and his attorney, Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver, faced a hearing in front of the Alabama Court of the Judiciary yesterday, Operation Save America leaders and other activists rallied outside the court to support Moore against judges who “hate God.”
Cal Zastrow, the anti-abortion activist who said in Wichita that he was coordinating grassroots support for Moore, posted on Facebook that Moore shared supper with some of the protesters and told them about “the big challenges he is experiencing from Sodomites and lawless courts.”
“The Alabama Court of the Judiciary has some very wicked members who aren't interested in upholding the rule of law. They hate God (but still go to churches) and will be trying to remove Chief Justice Roy Moore at a trial on Sept. 28 for his beliefs,” Zastrow wrote.
After the hearing, Moore, with Staver at his side, spoke to the press with the activists lined up behind him, including one holding a sign declaring “Sodomy Ruins Nations.”
One protester told AL.com that she was supporting Moore because he’s “the only leader in the country who is standing up for the rule of law and what’s right.”
Reacting to Ambrosia Starling, a drag queen who’s become a leader in anti-Moore efforts, the protester said: “We are women, we bear children and raise them in godly homes. That is not a woman. That’s a pervert. That’s a man in a dress acting like a woman. He’s not a woman and the law should afford him no protection. The opposite of that is true. They should protect godly homes, men and women, marriage between a man and a woman as the only ordained marriage. And it’s the only one that ever will be right. It’s not loving to allow him to continue in his perversion. What’s loving is to correct him, rebuke him and show him that perversion is not a healthy life, away from God is not a healthy choice.”
Also speaking at the rally was Rusty Thomas, the head of Operation Save America, who in an email to his supporters on Sunday praised Moore for defying the “Federal beast” and comparing the chief justice to the biblical Daniel, who, instead of being tossed into a lion's den, is fighting a “beastly” homosexuality that "seeks to devour any God honoring truth or person who upholds it in the public square."
“As individuals, I pray these confused folks who have been captured by this demonic lust find freedom through the love and truth of Jesus Christ,” he wrote. “Their agenda to remake America in their perverted image, however, let that agenda fall into the pit that they have created”:
Chief Justice Roy Moore is a godly statesmen that is doing his duty as a Lesser Magistrate. His example is so desperately needed today. We pray that other Judges, Governors, Legislators, and Sheriffs will be inspired to follow his example to reapply the Constitutional chain back on the Federal beast, restore law and order, and establish the necessary checks and balances our nation needs to preserve our liberty that is rooted righteousness and justice.
In about 2 hours, we will be taking our message to a busy intersection with signs and literature, then we will pray at the Supreme Court building where the "trial" will be held tomorrow.
Tomorrow morning, we will have a rally at noon to support Chief Justice Roy Moore and then hopefully make it in for the actual hearing. Please saturate what is happening here in Montgomery in much prayer. His is the last man standing against the immorality, injustice, and tyranny that is stalking America. God grants us the victory and may Roy Moore serve as a modern day Daniel.
As you recall, Daniel's enemies were jealous of his excellent spirit, wise behavior, and strong work ethic. They devised a plan to remove him from office and bring about his demise. They stated, "We shall not find any charge against this Daniel unless we find it against him concerning the law of his God" (Daniel 6:5).
Initially, it appeared their devious plan worked. Daniel was thrown in the lion's den where his enemies hoped for him to be devoured. And make no mistake about the vile nature of homosexuality, it is beastly. It seeks to devour any God honoring truth or person who upholds it in the public square. To their everlasting shame and demise, however, the pit they dug for Daniel, (Chief Justice Roy Moore) they fell into the same pit. The same rock they attempted to roll over Daniel (Chief Justice Roy Moore) is the same rock that rolled back on them. Daniel was removed from the lion's den and his enemies took his place and this time the lion's munched.
As individuals, I pray these confused folks who have been captured by this demonic lust find freedom through the love and truth of Jesus Christ. Their agenda to remake America in their perverted image, however, let that agenda fall into the pit that they have created. May the perverted agenda that seeks to make the good guys the bad guys wind up on the ash heap of history, along with every other tyrannical, blood lust of men who dared to defy and deny the authority of Almighty God in Jesus' mighty name!
John Eidsmoe, the prominent Christian Reconstructionist attorney who works for Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore’s Foundation for Moral Law, joined conservative radio host Jerry Newcombe on his show Thursday to discuss Moore’s stand against the Supreme Court’s marriage equality decision, which has gotten him suspended from his post.
Eidsmoe accused Justices Elena Kagan and Ruth Bader Ginsburg of staging a “political coup” by choosing not to recuse themselves from hearing the Obergefell case and declared that state courts and state legislatures have the "duty” to “nullify” the decision.
Eidsmoe first justified Moore’s actions claiming that the Supreme Court decision applied specifically to four states, not Alabama.
“But even more than that,” he said, “what I think we’re gonna argue here is that this particular decision is so egregious that the state courts, state legislatures and the like have a right and a duty to nullify and disregard it.”
He claimed the decision was “without constitutional support,” “arrived at by illegitimate means,” and “seeks to redefine the institution of marriage.”
“I don’t think any governmental body, especially a group of unelected judges, has the authority to redefine God’s institution of marriage,” Eidsmoe said.
Eidsmoe also compared Alabama courts’ rejection of Obergefell to the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s rejection of the Dred Scott decision.
He criticized Ginsburg and Kagan for not recusing themselves because they had previously performed weddings for same-sex couples.
“There’s really only one reason that they refused to recuse themselves,” he said, “and that’s they knew that their votes were needed to get a 5-4 majority in this case, and it is as raw a political coup as you could ever imagine, complicated by the fact that it is by those who are supposed to be considered the least dangerous branch of government and the least likely people that you’d think would be undermining our constitutional system with a coup.”
On Saturday, anti-gay Religious Right activists rallied in Montgomery in support of Alabama Supreme court chief justice Roy Moore, who has been suspended from his position by the state's judicial inquiry committee for attempting to defy federal court rulings on marriage equality.
The event kicked off with a prayer from pastor Rusty Johnson, who called upon God to not only bless the rally and Justice Moore, but also "to stand against this militant homosexual movement that is invading our land, stand against the demonic influences that have come not only to the state of Alabama but across the United States of America" by granting to Christians "the power and authority" to "cast these wicked spirits out of our society."
Kayla Moore, who is the wife of Justice Moore and currently runs the the Foundation for Moral Law that he started, delivered the keynote address, during which she spent several minutes attacking Ambrosia Starling, a drag queen who was a member of the coalition that filed a complaint against Moore.
Conflating Moore's suspension with the current right-wing outrage over transgender equality, Moore declared that she will not stand by and watch as men are allowed to enter the restroom with one of her granddaughters, which then prompted her to voice her outrage that her husband has been removed from the bench based on a complaint filed by "a man dressed as a woman."
"This man dresses as a woman, with makeup, a blonde wig, a dress, jewelry and calls himself a drag queen," Moore complained, as she demanded that the press investigate and expose him. "He works a regular job during the day and, at night, dresses as a woman and goes into nightclubs and bars. Now, I ask the press, who is he? Who is this man who hides his true identity? I charge you, find out who he is and let us know."
After declaring that her husband did not serve in Vietnam to protect the rights of people like Starling "because up to the last couple of years ago, it was a mental illness," she then read a reworked version of Martin Niemöller's famous "First They Came For The Socialists" anti-Nazi quote.
"First they came for the bakers, but we sat back because we don't bake cakes. Then they came for the florists and we sat back because we don't arrange flowers. Then they came for the clerks and the judges and we sat back because we don't issue marriage licenses and we don't judge. But then they came for me and there was no one left to defend me."
In a direct mail letter, Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver warns that Moore and other Christian leaders “are facing intense backlash for upholding God’s unwavering TRUTH.”
“In Alabama and across America, state judiciaries and legislatures are standing up against the federal judiciary, resisting tyrannical rule and upholding the moral law of God,” writes Staver, who asks for money to “defend Christian leaders who are being targeted by deep-pocketed, radical activists.”
Staver says “you and I must continue to pray and take an active stand against the forces destroying the foundations of our nation.” More from his letter:
I support Chief Justice Moore’s action that sends a “shot across the bow” regarding the Supreme Court’s egregious 5-4 marriage opinion on same-sex “marriage.” The United States Constitution does not prohibit states from affirming the natural crated order of one man and one woman joined together in marriage.
Like Daniel in the lion’s den, Chief Justice Moore is being persecuted for his faith by liberal legal professionals and radical LGGBT activists. But like Daniel, Chief Justice Moore will not bend, having faith that God will protect those who seek and follow His Word.
Staver asks recipients of the letter to sign and return (along with some money) a “Vote of Confidence” letter to Moore, which says in part:
Thank you for not bowing your knee to the U.S. Supreme Court’s egregious 5-4 marriage opinion on same-sex “marriage.” No civil authority, including the U.S. Supreme Court, has the authority to define marriage as anything but the union of one man and one woman!
I pray that God continues to guide and protect you, and to give you and other Christian leaders the continuing strength to turn the tide of immorality sweeping our nation.
Staver also includes a card reminding people to pray for Moore that he suggests placing in your Bible or on your refrigerator or bathroom mirror.
Supporters of Chief Justice Roy Moore of Alabama are planning to hold a rally on Saturday in defense of the judge, who has yet again been suspended by the state’s judicial inquiry committee, this time for attempting to defy federal court rulings on marriage equality.
Speaking to reporters at the press conference, Young singled out Ambrosia Starling, a drag queen who’s a member of the coalition that filed a complaint against Moore and who has become an accidental celebrity since Moore claimed that she was leading the effort against him.
Young said that it’s a “travesty” that a “transvestite” was able to file a complaint against Moore when “these are the kind of people who want to come into the bathroom of your children, boy or girl.”
He then warned that marriage equality would destroy the country. “At the end of the day,” he said, “our civilization was founded on the Judeo-Christian values, and when you start saying that a man and a man can get married, you’re destroying the very foundation of this nation.”
Young compared “redefining marriage” to changing the measurements of a foot or an ounce.
“The entire foundations are destroyed when you start redefining words, and especially what marriage is, and that’s between a man and a woman,” he said.
Young praised Moore for being “the only one in this entire country that’s standing.”
“If they take Judge Moore down, they’re going to come after your pastors, they’re going to come after your businesses if you don’t make the kind of cake they want, they’re going to make you go out of business,” he warned. “If you don’t want to perform a wedding like that, you’re going to go out of business.”
He added that “this is either Valley Forge or the Alamo, I just don’t know which one.”
Thomas subscribes to a version of nullification that holds that “lesser magistrates” — state and local officials — must defy federal laws and court rulings that they believe violate divine law. The leading proponent of this theory is anti-abortion activist Matt Trewhella, one of the signers of a 1993 document supporting violence against abortion providers, who spoke alongside Thomas at a recent abortion “abolition” event in Arizona.
Thomas writes in a press release today that he hopes Moore’s example “will spread like wild fire to inspire governors, state legislators, sheriffs, and other lower magistrates to rise up with one voice to say no to the federal beast, place the chain back on our federal government, restore law and order, and reestablish the checks and balances necessary to secure a future and hope for our nation in Jesus' mighty name!”
The prophet Isaiah warned, "Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter (Isaiah 5:20). Our nation has long rejected Biblical truth and now we labor under a stupor of delusion. When good becomes evil, it should not be surprising that the good guys become the bad guys. The movie Robin Hood stated our current situation well, "In the days of lawlessness, those who keep the law become the outlaw."
Our federal government for decades has been codifying evil into law. In the name of new federal values, they are destroying Christian and family values. In the name of government, they betray their sacred trust as government. In the name of the Constitution, they violate the Constitution. Under the color of law, they impose lawlessness upon the citizens of America and upon the great state of Alabama.
Our federal government continues to make straight what God has called crooked, turn moral wrongs into civil rights, and demand that "We the People" tolerate the intolerable. In the midst of this tyranny and moral anarchy, God has raised up a champion, none other than Chief Justice Roy Moore.
As a Lesser Magistrate, Chief Justice Roy Moore, is standing in the gap between federal tyranny and the life, liberty, and property of the citizens of Alabama and our nation. It is my sincere prayer that his example will spread like wild fire to inspire governors, state legislators, sheriffs, and other lower magistrates to rise up with one voice to say no to the federal beast, place the chain back on our federal government, restore law and order, and reestablish the checks and balances necessary to secure a future and hope for our nation in Jesus' mighty name!
Update: Moore’s wife, Kayla Moore, who heads the foundation that he founded, is also scheduled to address the rally.
Staver said that he and Moore are engaged in “spiritual warfare” against demonic forces, and urged listeners to contact Alabama officials to defend Moore.
He then went after the Obama administration’s “ridiculous” challenge to North Carolina’s anti-LGBT law, HB2, accusing the White House of “forcing this immorality, absolute rejection of objective reality and male and female, pushing all this agenda across America and down our throats.”
Advances in transgender rights, Staver warned, could mean that white people will soon be able to identify as black in order to attain “minority protection” or that young people will be able to identify as older in order to acquire firearms licenses.
Despite a ruling by a federal judge in Mobile making same-sex marriage legal in Alabama last year, and in the face of a United States Supreme Court ruling last year making its legality the law of the land, Moore instructed probate judges throughout Alabama to ignore those higher courts and to refuse to issue licenses to same-sex couples.
Moore's actions led the Southern Poverty Law Center to file complaints with the commission, which acts much in the same way as a grand jury. When it receives a complaint, the commission investigates and decides whether to forward charges to the Alabama Court of the Judiciary.
This isn’t the first time Moore has been in this situation.
Back in 2003, he was removed from the office of chief justice for flouting a federal court ruling ordering the removal of a Ten Commandments monument he had installed in the courthouse rotunda.
The episode turned Moore into a martyr in the eyes of right-wing activists, although his newfound celebrity wasn’t enough to help his two unsuccessful campaigns for governor.
But in 2012 Moore returned to the Alabama Supreme Court, where he was once again lauded by the Religious Right when he tried to block same-sex marriages from taking place in the state in defiance of the federal courts.
Moore himself has likened the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling to Nazi oppression and has tapped Liberty Counsel chairman Mat Staver, the Religious Right activist who used bizarre legal arguments to defend Kentucky clerk Kim Davis in her unsuccessful attempt to flout the Supreme Court on marriage equality, to represent him in the case.
Just as Staver likenedDavis to victims of the Holocaust, expect him to turn Moore, once again, into a symbol of the supposed persecution of Christians in America.
Indeed, far-right pastor Dave Daubenmire is already planning to hold a rally in Montgomery, Alabama, to support Moore and challenge the “uncircumcised philistine of the federal court system.”
Moore’s wife, Kayla Moore, who succeeded him in leading the Religious Right legal group Foundation for Moral Law, posted a song on her Facebook page yesterday comparing her husband to actual Christian martyrs.
Moore and his Liberty Counsel lawyers were calling on the Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission to dismiss ethical complaints that had been filed against Moore earlier in 2015 after he urged the governor not to comply with a federal court order on marriage equality. Moore, of course, had gotten in trouble before; in 2003 he was removed from his seat on the court when he refused a federal court order to remove a Ten Commandments monument he had installed in the rotunda of the judicial building.
People For the American Way Foundation was one of the groups that filed a complaint against Moore last year. The PFAWF complaint, which you can read here, was filed in early 2015, based on actions he took when he began to insert himself into a federal marriage equality case that was not before his court. He accused federal judges across the country of seeking to impose tyranny upon the nation, and he suggested he might not comply with a potential Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality (which came down a few months later). The complaint spells out the Canons of Judicial Ethics that Moore violated, undermining public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary. “Like the United States as a whole, Alabama is governed by the rule of law,” the complaint concludes, noting that “the history of the state shows the violent and tragic consequences when that ideal is not met.” The complaint asked that Moore once again be removed from his office.
In defending Moore on Thursday, Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver dismissed the complaints as “politically motivated” and warned that they “pose a threat to the doctrine of judicial independence.” Continued Staver, “Judges must be free to exercise their considered judgment without the threat of being attacked by organizations and individuals who wish to misuse the ethical process to further a radical political agenda.”
Staver’s concern for Moore’s judicial independence is touching, if a bit surprising, given that Staver was a cheerleader for Religious Right attacks on Iowa Supreme Court justices who ruled in favor of marriage equality. After a political campaign that was successful in unseating three state justices in 2010 retention elections, Staver crowed, “The justices crossed the line when they played the role of a legislator and abandoned judicial restraint.”
Moore also said at Wednesday’s press conference that this was about “judicial independence.” But when right-wing groups were cranking up the outrage machine against Iowa Supreme Court justices, Moore joined in the condemnation, saying that the conservative outcry against the justices would send “a signal all across the nation.”
“I am honored to have the support of Reverend Owens,” said Cruz. “His eloquent and uncompromising defense of the family and of religion in public life is inspiring and will continue to be effective. We are excited to have him serve as a spokesperson to pastors and in the African-American community.”
Owens is an anti-gay firebrand who was caught fibbing about his role in the Civil Rights Movement. Owens has:
Praised a Russian law that effectively bans speech in favor of gay rights.
Alleged that “homosexuality spreads because somebody abused children.”
“Kayla is a veteran of the struggle for religious liberty,” said Cruz. “As the wife of Chief Justice Roy Moore, Kayla played a key role during Alabama’s battle with the ACLU over the right to publicly acknowledge God. She knows that law does not grant rights: it simply protects the unalienable human rights given to each of us by God. I am honored to have her support.”
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore is winning plaudits from Religious Right groups after he issued an administrative order directing probate judges in his state not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Moore was an anti-gay activist in his own right before returning to the court in 2013, founding the far-right Foundation for Moral Law, which has published yesterday’s order on its website.
Moore told the far-right site WorldNetDaily that the Obergefell case provides “a wonderful time to teach the people of our country about states’ rights,” explaining that his order reflects the fact that “states do have powers.”
Already, Moore is winning support from those who called on state and local officials, such as Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, to defy the Supreme Court’s Obergefell ruling.
This Order is both courageous and very well-reasoned. We need more federal and state officers like Chief Justice Moore who understand that the job of the Federal Judiciary is not to legislate from the bench, but rather to simply decide disputes between parties consistent with the text of the Constitution. Judicial opinions, like Obergefell v. Hodges, that purport to set policy for all of America are simply not supported by the Constitutional grant of powers given to the Judiciary.
Thank God for Chief Justice Moore! Please keep him, his family, and his staff in your prayers!
“I applaud Chief Justice Roy Moore for this order reaffirming the marriage law in Alabama,” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “The Alabama Supreme Court issued an order in March 2015 barring probate judges from issuing same-sex marriage licenses after a federal court in January of last year overturned Alabama's voter-approved constitutional amendment defining marriage as one man and one woman,” Staver explained. “In Alabama and across America, state judiciaries and legislatures are standing up against the federal judiciary or anyone else who wants to come up with some cockeyed view that somehow the Constitution now births some newfound notion of same-sex marriage."
“The opinion of five lawyers on the U.S. Supreme Court regarding same-sex marriage is lawless and without legal or historical support," Staver concluded.
These legal developments are consistent with the developing resistance in America to the Supreme Court's attempt to legislate from the bench when it comes to marriage, ignoring the federal constitution in the process and inventing out of thin air a "right" to same-sex 'marriage.'
The American people reject judicial activism of the US Supreme Court and their attempt to redefine marriage. They continue to support marriage as it has existed throughout our nation's history, the union of one man and one woman.
Sanctity of Marriage Alabama applauds Chief Justice Roy Moore for doing his job and clarifying what is, in fact, the current law in Alabama. Chief Justice Moore has a constitutional duty (see Ala. Code 12-2-30) as head of the judicial system to "[take affirmative action to correct any] situation adversely affecting the administration of justice within the state." He has done this today. We expect that the associate justices of the Alabama Supreme Court will once again follow the line of duty before God and the Constitutions of the United States and Alabama as they did back in March."
Bryan Fischer of American Family Radio:
Judge Moore the only one upholding Constitution, which reserves marriage to the states. Civil obedience, not disobedience.
Roy Moore, the chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, is trying to stoke yet another fight with the federal judiciary over marriage equality.
Moore, a Republican with a harsh anti-gay record, was elected to serve as chief justice in 2012 after being removed from that same office in 2003 for defying a federal court ruling on his installation of a Ten Commandments monument in the courthouse rotunda.
Early last year, Moore similarlychallenged a federal court’s ruling striking down Alabama’s ban on same-sex marriage, cementing his status as a Religious Right hero and martyr.
It appears that he is not backing down from that fight, as today Moore released an administrative order, provided by the Southern Poverty Law Center, claiming that probate judges must abide by a state law barring same-sex marriage, despite the Supreme Court’s Obergefell ruling.
Confusion and uncertainty exist among the probate judges of this State as to the effect of Obergefell on the "existing orders" in API. Many probate judges are issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in accordance with Obergefell; others are issuing marriage licenses only to couples of the opposite gender or have ceased issuing all marriage licenses. This disparity affects the administration of justice in this State.
Yet the fact remains that the administration of justice in the State of Alabama has been adversely affected by the apparent conflict between the decision of the Alabama Supreme Court in API and the decision of the United States Supreme Court in Obergefell.
IT IS ORDERED AND DIRECTED THAT:
Until further decision by the Alabama Supreme Court, the existing orders of the Alabama Supreme Court that Alabama probate judges have a ministerial duty not to issue any marriage license contrary to the Alabama Sanctity of Marriage Amendment or the Alabama Marriage Protection Act remain in full force and effect.
The Foundation for Moral Law, which Moore founded and is currently led by his wife, Kayla Moore, also called on states to defy Obergefell and said it was “determined” to fight the decision in Alabama.
In a statement from his wife in June, which Moore shared on his Facebook page, the group said Obergefell was invalid and illegitimate: “Not only does the U.S. Supreme Court have no legal authority to redefine marriage, but also at least 2 members of the Court’s majority opinion were under a legal duty to recuse and refrain from voting. Their failure to recuse calls into question the validity of this decision.”
Elsewhere, Republican lawmakers in several states are trying to nullify Obergefell.
GOP legislators in Michigan and Tennessee are attempting to pass legislation negating the ruling in their states, and the Spartanburg Herald Journal reported yesterday on two Republican legislators in South Carolina who want to see the state challenge the marriage equality ruling:
Rep. Bill Chumley, R-Woodruff, and Rep. Mike Burns, R-Taylors, pre-filed a bill in the House to define marriage as between one man and one woman. He also aims for his bill to invalidate same-sex marriages in South Carolina. The bill is titled as the South Carolina Natural Marriage Defense Act.
"I represent the people, and the people have shown several times that they are opposed to this, and are in favor of traditional marriage," Chumley said.
The Supreme Court ruling in June legalizing same-sex marriage came down to a 5 to 4 vote, Chumley said. He said the split vote was indicative of the views of all Americans.
"Apparently, those four people believe like we do," he said. "I do believe that something that's a close vote like that sends a message, it's not cut and dry."
HB 2024 would forbid the state from using its resources to implement any presidential executive order unless it had been approved by Congress and found to be constitutional. Rep. Mark Finchem, R-Oro Valley, said he crafted it even before President Obama announced on Tuesday he is taking executive action to redefine who is a gun dealer and subject to requirements to do background checks.
But HB 2024 also would extend the same language to decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court. Finchem said that, absent congressional action, there is no reason that Arizona should have to do anything — or use state resources — to comply with court rulings.
In fact, Finchem told Capitol Media Services it’s wrong to even call what comes from the high court a “ruling.” And he derided the idea that the justices created “case law.”
“It’s not law at all,” he said.
“It’s case opinion and past practice, past application,” continued Finchem who got seven other Republicans to sign on as co-sponsors of the measure. And he said that it really is just the opinion of the majority of justices in a given case.
“The court can pass an opinion all day long,” he said. “But until that opinion goes back to Congress and becomes an enactment, and is signed into law, a statute, by the president, it’s not operable.”
One ruling in that category is the decision by the justices that states cannot deny the right to wed to same-sex couples. The net effect was to tell states that if they issue marriage licenses they have to make them available to all couples regardless of sexual orientation.
Finchem said he sees no reason why the justices, on their own, can force that on states. He said civil marriage is essentially a creation of the Internal Revenue Service on the premise the taxing agency needed to know who was entitled to certain benefits.
“If the federal government wants to issue a gay marriage license, they’re free to do that,” Finchem said. “But it’s not a state license.”
More to the point, he said the federal government — and a federal court — cannot force the state to do something when it’s contrary to the state’s own constitution.
The fall of marriage equality bans in all 50 states following the Supreme Court’s Obergefell decision was a disaster for the conservative movement, whose leaders have spent years demonizing same-sex couples and warning that the legal recognition of their marriages will unleash a wave of terror on the nation.
Even the not-exactly-pious GOP presidential frontrunner, Donald Trump, is activelycourting the anti-gay Right, although he has trouble explaining why he should be seen as a strong defender of “traditional marriage.”
In the eyes of many conservative activists, Obergefell was the product of a culture that had been slipping away for years, bringing America into an apocalyptic period where growing acceptance for homosexuality is ushering in disastrous consequences.
Weeks before the Supreme Court handed down its ruling, WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah declared that if the court struck down state bans on same-sex marriage and conservative states didn’t seceded from the union in protest, anti-gay activists like himself would flee the country. “Are there any governors or legislatures out there among the 50 states willing to secede to offer a refuge for the God-fearing?” he asked, warning that if states were to stay in the U.S. following a pro-equality decision, the world should expect “a pilgrimage by millions of Americans.”
End Times radio host Rick Wiles told his listeners that the country would “be brought to its knees” if the Supreme Court were to rule in favor of marriage equality and that there would be “pain and suffering at a level we’ve never seen in this country,” caused by “riots or looting or war on American soil or a fireball from space.”
Texas pastors Robert Jeffress and Rick Scarborough also got in the mix. Jeffress said the ruling could pave the way for the Antichrist while Scarborough said conservatives must “fight until we die” and “push back with all our might” against a ruling in favor of gay marriage, which he said would “unleash the spirit of hell on the nation.” Scarborough even boasted that he was ready to go to jail and face death: “We are not going to bow, we are not going to bend, and if necessary, we will burn.”
As one might expect, the responses to the ruling were not much different from the predictions.
The day after the ruling, Wiles declared that he received a message from God, who asked him to tell the people to “flee” the country before God destroys it through economic ruin, food shortages, terrorism, disease and slavery. “America is over,” he declared. Later, Wiles predicted that America is “going to see gunfire” from people resisting the government over gay marriage. “Somebody’s going to jail, somebody’s going to die, somebody’s going to suffer,” he said.
Michael Bresciani of the Christian Post said Obergefell would lead to “an economic crash much more serious than the stock market crash of 29,” while WND’s Farah envisioned “more civil and racial strife” or “an attack on our country from foreign power or terrorist group.”
Fox News pundit Todd Starnes said that “pastors who refuse to perform gay marriage and preach from the Bible should prepare for hate crime charges,” while Illinois pastor Erwin Lutzer told religious parents to prepare to “be diagnosed as culturally intolerant and personality intolerant,” as a result of which “their children will be taken away from them.” Perkins of the FRC claimed that the Supreme Court’s decision would threaten the freedom of speech and gun rights.
American Family Radio host Sandy Rios, who also serves as the American Family Association’s governmental affairs director, said that homosexuality may have been “a factor” in the deadly Amtrak crash in May. She suggested that the engineer, who is gay, may have been having a breakdown as he experienced “some confusion” related to homosexuality.
Fellow AFR host Bryan Fischer specifically blamed flooding in Texas on God’s judgment for homosexuality, saying that “you can make a geographical connection” between flooding and homosexuality. (We wonder what that means for American Family Radio’s home town of Tupelo, Mississippi, which was hit by a tornado last year).
Huckabee also suggested that America is in “a dangerous place” because “if man believes that he can redefine marriage, it’s apparent that man believes he has become his own god,” and God will not protect such a nation.
The Religious Right has a long history of absurdly claiming that evangelical Christians are facing persecution in America, and the Obergefell ruling only amped up such rhetoric.
Huckabee warned that the gay rights movement “won’t stop until there are no more churches, until there are no more people who are spreading the Gospel,” lamenting that too many Christians don’t realize “how close they are to losing all of their freedoms.” Huckabee’s fellow GOP presidential candidate, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, also got in on the action, warning that a gay “jihad” is “going after people of faith who respect the biblical teaching that marriage is the union of one man and one woman.”
Glenn Beck predicted that Obergefell would result in serious repercussions for the media, claiming that “anybody on this show [who] says they’re for traditional marriage” will have their airtime in jeopardy as the ruling “could mean the end of radio broadcasts like mine.”
Nothing set off more persecution rhetoric than the Kim Davis saga, in which the Rowan County, Kentucky, clerk blocked her office from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in defiance of a court order, citing “God’s authority.” She was temporarily placed in the custody of U.S. Marshals after she said she would continue to flout the courts and was only released after deputy clerks started to issue the licenses.
Even before the Davis case, many Republicans had been insisting that government officials may not have to treat court rulings on marriage as authoritative after all, and can simply flout the process of judicial review. Obergefell gave them the perfect opportunity to put these arguments into action.
Before quitting the presidential race, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal lambasted the decision, explaining that “no earthly court can change the definition of marriage.” Huckabee said that if elected president, he would tell the Supreme Court: “Thank you for your opinion, but we shall ignore it.” “It’s a matter of saving our republic to say that, as president, we’re not going to accept this decision, we will ignore it and we will not enforce it,” he said.
Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida also claimed that when civil law conflicts with “God’s rules,” then government officials must choose the latter because “God’s rules always win.” Rubio, along with his fellow GOP presidential candidates Cruz, Huckabee, Ben Carson, Rick Santorum and Carly Fiorina, also pledged to sign legislation confronting the supposed discrimination faced by gay marriage opponents.
The “700 Club” host worried in September that gay marriage would trigger a perilous financial crisis, warning that “the rupture of the entire financial framework of our world” could occur because of the Obergefell ruling. He again alleged in November that “the wrath of God” is headed to America now that “it’s a constitutional right for sodomites to marry each other,” possibly in the form of “a massive financial collapse.”
“They’re going to make you conform to them,” he said of gay rights advocates. “You are going to say you like anal sex, you like oral sex, you like bestiality, you like anything you can think of, whatever it is.”
“Christianity, the founding principle of this nation, is criminalized,” he said in response to the Davis controversy. “You go to jail if you believe in God and stand fast for your beliefs against the onslaught of secular humanism and the flood that comes about with it.” (Robertson, of course, has not been jailed).
Warning viewers that “the homosexuals don’t just want to be left alone, now they want to come out and stick it to the Christians,” Robertson said that gay rights laws are creating “absolute tyranny” and “it's high time we call it what it is and we stand up for freedom.”
The televangelist also offered his patented advice to people with gay children.
He told one mother to send her daughter, who is dating another woman, to a Christian summer camp and “pray that God will straighten her out.” He said that the girl was probably “pressured” into embracing a lesbian identity because “there’s so much lesbian stuff, I mean, lesbian this, lesbian the other, so much homosexual — the media is pushing this as hard as they can possibly push it.” He told another viewer who has a gay son to treat him like a drug addict, and advised yet another parent that God could change his gay son if only the son were to start “acting like a man.”
The defenders of Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk who attempted to block her office from issuing marriage licenses after the Supreme Court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, have retroactively been claiming that Davis was simply seeking a religious accommodation that would keep her name off such licenses. (This is despite the fact that Davis claimed that she was acting as an agent of God in keeping gay couples in her county from getting married.)
In an interview with Alaska conservative radio host Joe Miller this week, prominent Christian Reconstructionist John Eidsmoe, who now works for the foundation established by Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, argued that if Davis were to resign from her position or seek a religious accommodation to avoid being involved in gay marriages, that wouldn’t be enough. Instead, Eidsmoe said, lower courts and elected officials like Davis must “interpose” to “nullify” the marriage equality decision, which was made by a Supreme Court that has “become disobedient against God.”
Miller, who was Alaska’s Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate in 2010, agreed, adding that if officials like Davis resign, they are “basically clearing the field” for “additional persecutorial-type behavior by government.”
Absolutely. In fact, there are many who say that what she should have done in those circumstances is simply resign her position in protest. I would say that if she had resigned, likewise, if Chief Justice Moore had resigned from the Supreme Court over the Ten Commandments issue, they would be betraying the people that elected them. Under the doctrine of lesser magistrates, or interposition, as you sometimes call it, when a higher magistrate, like the U.S. Supreme Court or a federal judge, begins to act in an extralegal and tyrannical manner, it is the duty of lesser magistrates like state courts and state judges, county clerks and the like to interpose, that is to stand between the people they represent against the tyranny of the higher magistrate.
You might say that if the higher magistrate has become disobedient against God, for the lower magistrate to simply follow what the higher magistrate says would make the lower magistrate complicit in this act of disobedience. I think she has a duty to stay on and a duty to resist. What they’re trying to do in that case right now, of course, is they’re trying to work out an accommodation where we could say that the law has a duty to accommodate those who have religious objections. That’s fine in so far as it goes, but it doesn’t go far enough. Rather, they need to recognize that this whole decision is illegitimate and it needs to be nullified.
RWW’s Paranoia-Rama takes a look at five of the week’s most absurd conspiracy theories from the Right.
This has been a very sad week for Right Wing Watch as it marks the end of the Jade Helm 15 military exercises that caused an uproar within right-wing media, although something tells us that there will be more bizarre conspiracy theories to look out for…
5) Glenn Beck Was Right! See, This Thing He Read On The Internet…
Obviously, ISIS doesn’t exactly have territory throughout Europe, as Beck predicted, but now he has finally found proof that he was right all along: an online petition calling on Munich to end its Oktoberfest celebrations out of respect for Muslim refugees.
"A caliphate will be established. It will cause chaos. It will spread and begin to destabilize Europe and the western...
As the myth-busting website Snopes points out, the petition on Change.org to ban Oktoberfest was not started by a person living in Germany and “even if the petition were written in earnest, it would represent one person’s opinion and not that of all Muslim refugees.”
“Additionally, the viewpoint expressed by the petition appears to be a minority opinion, as the petition has only managed to muster a few hundred signatures, and the majority of those appear to have come from people who signed in order to add hateful comments,” Snopes continues. “Those comments lead us to believe that this petition may was created by an Internet troll in order to foment outrage. The fact that this petition was posted on 11 September, a day on which items critical of Islam tend to reach fever pitch, supports this hypothesis.”
Other petitions on the website, which can be submitted by anyone for any reason, include demands that President Obama “allow a high school student to have a party after homecoming and for WaWa to bring back roast beef sandwiches.”
Of course, Beck is desperate to find anything to support his claim that the caliphate is gaining a foothold in Europe, even if the “proof” comes from something just as credible as a chain letter. Next, Beck will demand that if you don’t send this email to seven other people, you will be cursed for life and your first crush will never love you.
4) ‘They’re Going To Eat Their Children’
Like Beck, televangelist Jim Bakker comes up with apocalyptic predictions, warns of impending financial crashes, nuclear EMP attacks and divine judgment, sells costly prepper food, urges viewers to buy gold, pushes bogus narratives about anti-Christian persecution in America and promotes a generally dystopian view of the world and its future.
Bakker, however, is a bit more honest about his role as a doomsday prophet.
While selling his survivalist food buckets earlier this month, Bakker said that in order to survive America’s impending collapse, people need to store their food in secret, because otherwise others will come for it. Even their “sweet neighbors” will do whatever it takes to get food, Bakker warned: “They’re going to eat their babies…they’re going to eat their children.”
3) First They Came For Kim Davis…
Next week, Kentucky clerk Kim Davis will receive an award at the Family Research Council’s Values Voter Summit for her decision to go to jail rather than allow deputy clerks in her county to issue marriage licenses to gay couples.
The Religious Right has latched on to Davis’ defiance of the courts, despite the fact that her cause is deeplyunpopular in the rest of the country.
The head of Liberty Counsel, the anti-gay group representing Davis and a cosponsor of FRC’s summit, has repeatedlycompared Davis to a Jewish victim of Nazi Germany.
Another Religious Right hero who has similarly defied the federal courts on marriage equality, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, is so enchanted with Davis that he rewrote the famous anti-Nazi poem, “First They Came For The Socialists,” to make it about Davis’ plight:
While Moore hoped that Davis’ commitment to using a public office to impose her religion on others would inspire more conservatives to get involved in U.S. politics, one far-right activist said that Davis’ experience is proof that Americans should “flee” the country to safer shores.
“God tells us how to solve the problem, he says flee,” John Price said. “There’s a time to fight and there’s a time to flee.”
2) Islamic Training Camps In The US: Just Asking The Question
The day following the CNN Republican presidential debate, Donald Trump held a rally in New Hampshire where he fielded a question from a man who had something to say: “We have a problem in this country, it’s called Muslims. We know our current president is one, you know he’s not even an American. We have training camps growing where they want to kill us. That’s my question, when can we get rid of them?”
Trump responded vaguely about how he is “going to be looking at a lot of different things,” and his campaign manager later insisted that Trump just wants to stay focused on the “bigger issue” of Obama “waging a war against the Christians in this country.”
Anyone who follows the far-right media could have expected that GOP presidential candidates would eventually be confronted with claims about radical Islamic training camps in the U.S.
“Fears of ‘Muslim training camps’ have simmered on the far right for years, especially since the rise of the Islamic State,” writes Jenna Johnson of the Washington Post. “World Net Daily and Judicial Watch — the latter an advocacy group that has successfully sued for records from Hillary Clinton’s tenure at the State Department — have published stories that allege FBI knowledge of dozens of camps, many across the deep South.”
As Max Fischer points out at Vox, Fox hosts like Bill O’Reilly and Lou Dobbs both pushed claims about secret Islamic training camps throughout the U.S., and “just this spring, FBI arrested a Tennessee man named Robert Doggart who was plotting to lead a far-right militia on a killing spree against a heavily Muslim community in New York state. Doggart believed the community was a ‘Muslim Jihadist Training Camp,’ according to a post he made on his web site.”
But maybe President Obama really was plotting to engineer such dastardly deeds, but was exposed by true heroes like Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Rep. Louie Gohmert who gave legitimacy Jade Helm 15 paranoia.
Now that Jade Helm 15 is over, the same politicians and pundits who used the military drill to promote baseless fears about the Obama administration will quickly find a new conspiracy theory to latch onto as the cycle endlessly repeats itself.
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore was forced to leave his first post on the state’s high court back in 2003 after he defied a court order to remove a monument of the Ten Commandments from state grounds. This, he said in an interview with Eagle Forum Live on Saturday, was all part of the anti-Christian persecution in America that he claims is forcing believers like him out of public office.
Anne Cori, Phyllis Schlafly’s daughter and the guest-host of the program, asked Moore “how can Christians today live fearlessly” when they are afraid of being “branded a public enemy” for beliefs like opposing marriage equality.
Moore responded that the separation of church and state is now being “used to exclude Christians from holding public office.”
“Well, that’s what they did to you!” Cori interjected.
“Yes, and that’s what they did to others. They’re saying you can profess your beliefs elsewhere, but when you’re under government you cannot,” Moore said.
“Christians are being forced to give up their position in government or else succumb to something that they don’t believe,” he added. “And that’s the whole point, in my opinion, of what’s going on. They want to force anybody who has a belief, in the sanctity of marriage, for example, not to hold public office.”
Earlier in the program, Moore explained that the idea of separation of church and state came from the Bible and therefore actually requires the government to acknowledge the “soveriengty of God” through things like his Ten Commandments display.
“Don’t you think there’s a misunderstanding of this phrase, the separation of church and state?” Cori asked.
“Yes, it’s a complete misunderstanding,” he replied. “In fact, the separation of church and state can be related to the Bible, if you really want to go back. It’s the way God separated the priests out of the tribe of Levi, the family of Aaron from the kings out of the tribe of Judah, the family of David. The priesthood and the civil government were not to interfere with each other. And in today’s society, you see the government actually interfering with the church and with our religious liberty.”
“If you separate God from our government, from our laws, then you lose your religious liberty,” he said. “And that’s so basic an understanding of religious liberty that most Christians and most Americans do not have.”
“Would that mean that the judges today when they throw out the Ten Commandments as their law, then they are really putting themselves above God?” Cori asked.
“Well, they not only threw out the Ten Commandments, you’ve got to understand, it was never about the Ten Commandments per se, it was about the sovereignty of God,” Moore replied. “And, yes, whey they say you can’t acknowledge the sovereignty of God, then they dispute the whole basis of religious freedom and the rights you get from that. So, basically, the battle over the Ten Commandments was a battle over acknowleding the soveriengty of God. And that was never to be permitted to be interfered with by government.”
Correction: This post originally incorrectly referred to Cori as Schlafly's niece.
Roy Moore, the chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, was a guest on Eagle Forum Live over the weekend, where he discussed the recent developments in marriage equality with Anne Cori, Phyllis Schlafly’s daughter.
Moore seemed to be thrown a little off guard when a listener called in and asked angrily why “people use the 14th Amendment to protect interracial marriage when the authors of the 14th Amendment were against interracial marriage.” (The Supreme Court has found bans on both same-sex and interracial marriages to be violations of the 14th Amendment.)
Cori interrupted the caller and asked Moore to instead address people who say “you have to agree with same-sex marriage because interracial marriage is okay.”
The difference, Moore said, is that the right to the “pursuit of happiness” found in the Declaration of Independence came from God and God supports interracial marriage but not same-sex marriage.
“I think people today would say that same-sex marriage is a pursuit of happiness,” Cori interjected.
“Well, they would say that, but that’s not the way the laws of God define the pursuit of happiness,” Moore responded. “And pursuit of happiness was given by God and recognized by the United States Supreme Court in 1967 in Loving v. Virginia.”