Suspended Alabama Chief Justice Announces Senate Bid

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We haven't heard the last of anti-LGBT Alabama jurist Roy Moore: He announced Wednesday that he is running for U.S. Senate.

Moore, the chief justice of the state Supreme Court, was suspended for the remainder of his term after the Alabama Court of the Judiciary found he violated judicial ethics.

Moore pledged to help Donald Trump "make America great again" by first returning the country to fidelity to God and the traditional family.

Moore will run in what is expected to be a crowded GOP primary to fill the seat vacated by now U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Now the voters of Alabama will get to weigh in via a special election (the primary is in August and the general election is in December), and thanks to his Bentley connection, odd is far from being a shoo-in.

In announcing his campaign, the 70-year-old Moore reiterated his opposition to marriage equality, saying that the Supreme Court had "destroyed ... our sacred institution of marriage".

A gay rights group says suspended Chief Justice Roy Moore is seeking to capitalize on the name recognition he gained "for harming LGBTQ people" in Alabama.

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The Court of Judiciary, which disciplines judges, removed Moore as Alabama's chief justice in 2003 after he disobeyed a federal judge's order to remove a boulder-sized Ten Commandments monument that he installed in the rotunda of the state judicial building. But Stuart, with her colleagues, voted in March to dismiss all pending motions in the case in March following the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Obergefell v. Hodges striking down state bans on same-sex marriage.

In addition to naming Stuart chief justice, Ivey will now be able to appoint a new associate justice to give Alabama's highest court its full nine members. "And I believe our courts are the battleground for our God-given rights as free people", Parker said in a statement.

Richard Cohen, president of the Southern Poverty Law Center, which filed the complaints that led to Moore's removal, calls Moore the "Ayatollah of Alabama" who has been unable to separate his personal religious beliefs from his judicial responsibilities. Last week, the Alabama Supreme Court upheld his suspension.

Fighting his suspension, Moore's lawyers had incredibly tried to claim that he did not act to try and halt gay weddings, despite extensive public records and court documents on the matter. And now Moore will take his virtually universal name recognition and his hard-core Christian-right base of support into a low-turnout multicandidate Senate race where nearly anything can happen.

Moore has also shown an interest in sentencing reform, and been critical of the state's habitual offender act. In 2010 he finished fourth in the Republican primary candidate for governor, and he unsuccessfully tried to unseat the state's incumbent governor in 2006.

The Republican primary is August 15.