Alabama Governor, Chief Justice Reject Gay Marriage Ruling By Federal Judge

| by Michael Allen

Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore recently urged Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) to ignore U.S. District Court Judge Callie Granade's ruling that legalized gay marriage in the state last Friday.

Moore's office released the letter that he wrote to Gov. Bentley, who also opposes same-sex marriage, noted AL.com.

"As Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, I will continue to recognize the Alabama Constitution and the will of the people overwhelmingly expressed in the Sanctity of Marriage Amendment," Moore wrote in his letter.

"I ask you to continue to uphold and support the Alabama Constitution with respect to marriage, both for the welfare of this state and for our posterity," Moore added. "Be advised that I stand with you to stop judicial tyranny and any unlawful opinions issued without constitutional authority."

"As you know, nothing in the United States Constitution grants the federal government the authority to redefine the institution of marriage," claimed Moore.

However, the U.S. Supreme Court redefined marriage in the case of Loving v. Virginia to allow interracial marriages in 1967. The Supremacy Clause in the U.S. Constitution (Article VI, Clause 2) does give federal law power over state law and constitutions. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the 1859 case Ableman v. Booth that states cannot overrule federal court judgements.

In response, Gov. Bentley said in a statement today, "The people of Alabama voted in a constitutional amendment to define marriage as being between man and woman. As governor, I must uphold the Constitution. I am disappointed in Friday's ruling, and I will continue to oppose this ruling. The Federal government must not infringe on the rights of states."

Moore also quoted the Bible verse Mark 10:6-9 in his letter to Gov. Bentley and said that he advised the Alabama Probate Judges Association to tell its members not to issue gay marriage licenses. The Alabama Probate Judges Association has claimed that the federal judge's ruling only applied to the same-sex couple who sued the state.

"There is no credible legal argument that an order from a federal judge with jurisdiction over a matter isn't binding on a state government," Ronald Krotoszynski, a constitutional law expert at the University of Alabama School of Law, told Reuters.

According to RightWingWatch.org, Moore claimed in 2012 (video below) that same-sex marriage supporters wanted to take away that "natural union between a man and a woman" and that Satan was convincing people to accept gay marriage.

Judge Grande did issue a 14-day stay on her ruling on Sunday to allow the state time to file an appeal with the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

Sources: RightWingWatch.org, AL.com, Cornell University Law School, Wikipedia, Reuters
Image credit: YouTube Screenshot