Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore is scheduled to go on trial Sept. 28 on charges that he violated judicial ethics by repeatedly refusing to abide by the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 2015 ruling, in Obergefell v. Hodges, on marriage equality, and that he encouraged the 68 probate judges in the state — the elected officials that issue marriage licenses in Alabama — to ignore the ruling, too.
The Alabama Court of the Judiciary, the panel that disciplines judges in the state, refused Moore’s motion to dismiss the ethics complaint against him. But the panel also refused a motion from the group of civil rights organizations, led by the Southern Poverty Law Center, that filed the complaint to have Moore removed from office immediately.
At the September hearing, a panel of nine judges will determine whether Moore did, indeed, violate judicial ethics and if he did, what punishment he will face. If the judges determine that he did violate ethics, Moore could be removed from his seat on the state Supreme Court.
If that happens, it will be the second time that Moore will have been removed from the court. He was ousted from the office in 2003 after refusing to remove a Ten Commandments monuments from the state judicial building. But the state’s voters returned him to the same office in 2012.
Alabama’s Judicial Inquiry Commission suspended Moore in May based on the complaint.
The Associated Press has compiled this timeline of Moore’s efforts to stop same-sex marriage in Alabama.