Roy Moore, the former chief justice of Alabama who was removed from office for refusing to remove a 2-ton monument of the Ten Commandments from his court, told Newsmax.TV he will not replace the controversial granite centerpiece if he wins his old job back in November.
But he still will “recognize the sovereignty of God” in his decisions, Moore added in the exclusive interview.
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Moore is clear favorite to be re-elected chief justice following his surprise victory in the Republican primary. GOP members hold all seven statewide elected jobs in Alabama.
“I will not bring the monument back, not because it’s illegal to do so, but because it would confuse the real issue,” said Moore, who was removed from office in 2003 after a case that drew nationwide attention to the question of the separation of church and state.
Moore said that, if he wins the election against Democrat Harry Lyon, he has new problems to face as Alabama’s top judge. “We’ve got budget problems in the court system and also problems with judges ruling outside the Constitution they are sworn to uphold.
“We’ve got that both in the federal courts and the state courts, but we are all sworn to the United States Constitution and that is the Constitution we are obliged to uphold.”
Since being removed from office, two years into his first term, Moore has twice unsuccessfully run for the Republican nomination for Alabama governor. Last year he even considered getting in the race for the GOP nomination for the White House.
He was considered an outsider in the three-way Republican primary, but he received slightly more than 50 percent of the vote, beating both incumbent chief justice Chuck Malone and former state Attorney General Charles Craddick. The size of that victory avoided a run-off election.
Moore, 65, said elections remain the best method for judges, and he opposes the so-called Missouri Plan in which they are appointed. “People need to vote on their judges, and the system we have in Alabama is just fine,” he said.
On the biggest judicial question of the day, Moore said he believes the Supreme Court justices will overturn the Affordable Health Care Act. “They will rule according to the Constitution, and they will clearly find the Obamacare law unconstitutional.
“It imposes an unlawful mandate on people and clearly exceeds the enumerated powers under Article I of the United States Constitution. It’s a violation of the 10th Amendment that the powers not delegated to the United States, nor prohibited by it to the states are reserved to the states respectively, or the people.”
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