By Joey Kennedy
Alabama Political Reporter
Two out of three ain’t bad, sings Meat Loaf on one of his albums a few years back.
Mike Hubbard, former speaker of the Alabama House, was convicted on 12 counts of corruption earlier this year and thrown out of office. He’s appealing instead of starting his four-year prison sentence, but he’ll eventually run out of time. He’s gone.
Now, Chief Justice Roy Moore is, for the second time, tossed off the Alabama Supreme Court. Moore previously was removed from the court for refusing to get rid of his Ten Commandments monument from the state Judicial building after being ordered to do so by the federal courts.
This time, the homophobic Chief Justice was suspended for the rest if his term (without pay) for refusing to go along with the U.S. Supreme Court’s order that legalized same-sex marriage.
Moore has long been a homophobe. He doesn’t believe gay and lesbian persons should have the right to marry. But the U.S. Supreme Court said they can marry. Moore defied that, and now he’s suspended for the remainder of his term, which ends in 2018.
Two out of three ain’t bad.
Hubbard is a criminal; Moore, a homophobic loser.
Along with Dr. Dr. Robert Bentley, who may be impeached, they have embarrassed Alabama for years. Alabama embarrassed itself when it elected Bentley, the Luv Guv, and re-elected Moore as Chief Justice — again. Hubbard was re-elected while under indictment for corruption. We get what we deserve.
Moore, of course, reacted with characteristic “class” and, like Hubbard, with no remorse. He blamed his removal on a political conspiracy, like Hubbard. Hard to justify that in a state where Republicans, like him, control everything.
Moore made it a political issue, as he always does. Poor Roy Moore. He’s such the victim. If you don’t believe it, just ask him:
“This was a politically motivated effort by radical homosexual and transgender groups to remove me as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court because of outspoken opposition to their immoral agenda,” Moore responded in a story by APR’s Brandon Moseley.
Immoral agenda? That’s Moore’s twisted view, not the view good people who support allowing others who love each other wanting only to be married.
As Chief Justice, Moore was supposed to follow the law. He didn’t. And now he’s suspended for the remainder of his term. His fault. Not some gay person who acted out on the Judicial Building’s steps. Who could blame them for celebrating, anyway.
Yet, here’s what’s really Donald Trump scary: Moore may run for governor. He’s done it twice before, to no effect, but don’t underestimate the Alabama electorate. He’s aged out of being able to run for the Supreme Court again (thankfully). But he can run for governor all day long. Winning is another question, sure, but plenty of oddballs have made it into office in this state, though none nearly as odd as Moore. (Look at his eyes!)
Of course, to Moore, this was just another case of political persecution. Republican Party chair Terry Lathan agrees, too.
“Judge Moore was elected, twice, by the citizens of our state,” Lathan said in the story by Moseley, as if Moore being elected is something to brag about. “In light of this, two groups who are unaccountable to the voters have overstepped boundaries in suspending a statewide elected judge. On May 21, 2016, the Alabama Republican Party passed a resolution strongly opposing the removal of Chief Justice Moore.”
Hey, that’s the process. Don’t blame the Judicial Inquiry Commission and Court of the Judiciary for fulfilling their responsibilities.
So the good news: Moore will never again have an impact on any judicial decision in Alabama. The bad news: Moore is free to have an impact elsewhere, especially if Alabama voters don’t come to their senses.
But for now: Two out of three ain’t bad.
Joey Kennedy, a Pulitzer Prize winner, writes a column every week for Alabama Political Reporter. Email: [email protected]