Alabama has become the 37th state to support legalizing gay marriage as an Alabama Federal District Court has ordered the issuance of marriage licenses for same sex couples on Monday, despite heavy opposition from the state’s chief judge, Roy S. Moore. This comes following his eleven-hour effort to order local judges to disregard the ruling legalizing gay marriage within the state. “Effective immediately, no Probate Judge of the State of Alabama nor any agent or employee of any Alabama Probate Judge shall issue or recognize a marriage license that is inconsistent with [state law],”Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy S. Moore said in an order.
The U.S. Supreme Court denied Alabama’s request to stop the issuance of marriage licenses to same sex couples as the District Court ruled last month that the state must issue marriage licenses starting Monday, February 9th. Moore wrote the order alleging that the ruling violates the U.S. and Alabama Constitutions. However, the move drew quick condemnation among legal experts and human rights activists alike as the Federal Court’s decision superseded the state court decision and Moore was in no position to disregard the order. This move drew comparisons to the state’s decision to block the implementation of a federal order to integrate the University of Alabama in 1963.