Alabama Chief Justice Halts SSM - How do candidates respond?

So Roy Moore is at it again. Today he has ordered all probate judges in the state to stop issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples.
Is there a precedent of a State Supreme Court issuing a ruling intended to directly counteract a SCOTUS decision?

I assume I am correct in thinking this will surely fail but how will the presidential candidates react? I imagine the D’s will all condemn it. I hope Jeb has enough sense to realize it is a bad idea and hope some of the other GOP candidates would too. Of course, I expect it is only a matter of time before Trump spouts some delightful nugget of wisdom on the subject.

I would guess it happened in the Southern states to counteract federal Civil Rights laws. Anyone know?

Several candidates in addressing the issue before this have mentioned it being the law of the land. Kasich stands out in my memory from the first debate. Even the ones that actively want to do something like an amendment to change the law of the land can still get on board with this being the wrong way to go about things.

Still when you mix SSM opposition with “screw the gub’mint” together some candidates will take the bait. Huckabee I expect is going to rush in and roll around the issue like a cat with catnip.

Then there’s Trump… you just never know what will come out of his mouth.

You’re the only one.

HA! I kill me!

And I’ve just read a rather convincing piece (linked on that indicates that this is an intentional strategy, to keep any opponents from being able to pin him down.

So Trump is Asimov’s Mule. Interesting article, and very long for an internet piece. Whew, that reminded me of the good old days of books.

No, he’s a plain ol’ horse’s ass.

State appellate courts were actually (relatively) evenhanded in the civil rights era. For example, the Alabama Supreme Court overturned the death sentence of a black laborer named Jimmy Wilson who’d been sentenced to death for stealing $1.50 from a white woman (!). Mostly, though, it didn’t come up. Civil rights issues generally didn’t go through state courts because black plaintiffs knew they’d get much better treatment in federal courts.

Yes. Ableman v. Booth…Wisconsin.

The real question is whether the Alabama Probate Judges will actually pay any attention to this, or just ignore it and quietly keep issueing marriage licenses, (There have already been several issued in Alabama.)

If they do that, is there retaliation Moore can take on Probate Judges who ignore him?

If they do refuse, it seems like the denied applicants would sue in Federal Court, which would go directly to the Supreme Court (since the state of Alabama would be a party), and they would certainly uphold their own decision. Seems like this would be a slam-dunk case for the plaintiff’s lawyer, and a good chance to ask for the state to pay for their legal costs.

I expect this is really nothing more than a part of Judge Moore’s re-election campaign.

Oooh an application of the OODA loop to presidential politics. :smiley: I’ll dig in to read the whole thing later but wanted to say thanks now.

According to Wikipedia, the Alabama Supreme Court actually upheld the death sentence. The sentence was eventually commuted by the governor of Alabama after a direct request from the Secretary of State, because the conviction was causing international outrage:

According to the OP cited article, this particular yokel judge is claiming “confusion” among probate judges because a previous Alabama law prohibited SSM. It seems that it’s only the Alabama Chief Justice himself who has a hard time understanding the relationship between the US Supreme Court and the state courts. I would think that any judge, let alone a chief justice, with that level of confusion about legal principles that are taught in grade school should probably be impeached and disbarred.

He was actually already thrown out of office once before, for defying a federal court’s order to remove a ten commandments monument that he’d installed. It wouldn’t surprise me if he’s trying to have it happen again.

I remember that incident – I didn’t remember that it was the same yokel! That guy must be a real piece of work.

1859 and Wisconsin lost. So someone needs to make Moore aware of that ruling. He seems to think there is still a question on whether or not Federal law trumps state law.

The man clearly has a very poor understanding of how the law works.

Or he’s just setting himself up to get some more money. The last time he got fired, he ended up making more from his book and speaking fees than he did as a judge.

Maybe he’s setting himself up for a run at Governor or Senator. Sessions is up in 2020 (Shelby this year but it’s really too late for that) and he ain’t young. Governor Bentley, if I’m reading right, is term limited in 2019.

Yeah. Moore is totally doing this for politics. The practice of law and administration of courts has just about exactly zero to do with this whole schtick.

Huh. I totally misremembered that case.

Moore’s position is that Obergefell may not apply to Alabama because the state wasn’t a party to that litigation. So (at least in theory) whatever distinguishing features exist in Alabama’s marriage law may mean it is somehow different from the four Obergefell state parties.

It’s a totally bullshit argument because Moore hasn’t actually pointed to any substantive differences, but it is not 100% without support. Southern (and other segregated*) states pulled something quite similar after Brown v. Board of Education; those that were directly ordered to integrate their schools did so very slowly, and those that weren’t parties pretended they weren’t covered necessitating many more lawsuits. In fact, Brown actually wound up going back before SCOTUS a second time over enforcement.

*Although we always think of the South as being the civil rights battleground, the case was actually Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (Kansas).

Before the GOP convention, their candidates try to out Christian each other because of all the campaign donations available from the Christian Right. After the convention, the nominee will pull a 180 to attract the moderate voters.