Roy Moore’s defiant road in pursuit of a US Senate seat

In his nearly three decades in the public eye, Roy Moore has never been one to shy away from controversy or confrontation.

Whether it’s the public display of the Ten Commandments or his refusal to enforce the U.S. Supreme Court’s legalization of same-sex marriage, Moore has gained national attention for his dogged and bombastic defense of his brand of Christianity’s role in the American political system.

The twice-removed former Alabama Supreme Court chief justice is now vying to become Alabama’s next U.S. senator, having defeated sitting U.S. Sen. Luther Strange, who was backed by both Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump, in the Republican primary.

The race became a proxy war between the populist and establishment wings of the Republican Party, and pitted the president against his former top aides Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka, who supported Moore.

Moore will now take on former U.S. Attorney and Democratic nominee Doug Jones in the general election in December.

Here’s a look back at some of Moore’s most controversial moments since his first appointment to public office.


Moore’s first appointment as a judge came in 1992, when then Governor H. Guy Hunt appointed him to the 16th Circuit Court of Alabama.

Moore quickly generated controversy by hanging a wooden plaque inscribed with the Ten Commandments on the wall of his courtroom, and started the practice of beginning his court proceedings with a prayer.

In 1995, the American Civil Liberties Union sued Moore, claiming his display of the Ten Commandments and courtroom prayers were unconstitutional.

The suit was eventually dismissed after it was ruled the ACLU lacked standing in the case, and Moore was allowed to keep his plaque up and continue his prayer in the courtroom tradition.

In 1999, Moore announced his campaign for Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice, largely focusing on his defense of the Ten Commandments and status as a defender of religion in the public sphere.

Surprising many, Moore won the seat, defeating sitting Alabama Associate Supreme Court Justice Harold See in the GOP primary. Moore went on to win the seat easily in the general election.


After his election, Moore began designing a monument that he said was meant to depict, “the moral foundation of law.”

What was eventually unveiled in the summer of 2001 was a 5,280-pound, granite monument affixed with the Ten Commandments in the rotunda of the Alabama…

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