Alabama's Court of the Judiciarysaying Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, 69, violated judicial ethics when he ordered judges not to respect the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark ruling on same-sex marriageunanimously decided to suspend him for the remainder of his term in office.
The order also requires Moore to pay the costs of the proceedings against him and stipulates that he will not be paid for the rest of his six-year term.
The next election for the state's chief justice post is scheduled for 2018.
The court made clear that the nine-to-zero ruling was based on Moore's behavior, not his views.
Pro-LGBT organizations hailed the decision. "Roy Moore has flagrantly and willfully attempted to block marriage equality at every turn in Alabama, using his position of power to push a personal, radically anti-LGBTQ agenda. We are thrilled that justice has been done today and he will no longer be able to use the bench to discriminate against people he had taken an oath to to protect," said Eva Kendrick, state manager for the Human Rights Campaign, Alabama. "Roy Moore's bigoted rhetoric and unethical actions harmed LGBTQ Alabamians and emboldened those who would seek to hurt us further. We hope this is a turning point for our state. We must focus on electing politicians and judges who will move us forward, not backward."
In a separate statement, SPLC President Richard Cohen said, "The Court of the Judiciary has done the citizens of Alabama a great service by suspending Roy Moore from the bench. He disgraced his office and undermined the integrity of the judiciary by putting his personal religious beliefs above his sworn duty to uphold the U.S. Constitution.
"Moore was elected to be a judge, not a preacher. It's something that he never seemed to understand. The people of Alabama who cherish the rule of law are not going to miss the Ayatollah of Alabama."