Second Alabama Justice dodges ethics action over same-sex marriage

Ethics complaint against Alabama Supreme Court Justice Tom Parker over same-sex marriage comments dismissed. Official photo.

Montgomery, Ala. (AP) — A judicial ethics panel has dismissed a complaint against Alabama Supreme Court Justice Tom Parker over comments he made about the court decision that effectively legalized same-sex marriage nationwide.

Parker's attorney, Mat Staver, said Friday that the Judicial Inquiry Commission dismissed the complaint filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center over comments Parker made on a Christian-themed radio show last year. Staver praised the decision.

"Shame on the SPLC for filing this politically-motivated complaint against Justice Parker," Staver said.

Parker said on the show that the U.S. Supreme Court justices jumped outside legal precedents to "impose their will on this country." The radio host also questioned Parker about what would happen if states resisted the Supreme Court decision. In response, Parker said "it could maybe start a revival of what we need in this country to return to our founding principles."

The complaint accused Parker of showing disrespect for the judiciary and violating judicial ethics by commenting on cases.

Parker last year called the complaint "frivolous and not worthy of comment."

"Tom Parker is a lucky guy, he dodged a bullet this time," said Richard Cohen, the law center's president.

Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore was suspended from the bench last month after the Court of the Judiciary ruled that he urged probate judges to defy the U.S. Supreme Court on gay marriage. The law center also filed the complaint against Moore.

By Kim Chandler, Associated Press. Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The Gayly – October 22, 2016 @ 7:15 a.m.