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Moore ally appointed as state court system administrator

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama’s chief justice on Wednesday announced that Rich Hobson will serve as his administrative director of courts, a position he held twice under former Chief Justice Roy Moore.

Hobson last year unsuccessfully challenged U.S. Rep. Martha Roby in the Republican congressional primary. He also managed Moore’s unsuccessful 2017 campaign for U.S. Senate, a race Moore lost after being accused of sexual misconduct — allegations he denied.

Chief Justice Tom Parker also worked for Moore before being elected to the Alabama Supreme Court in 2004 as an associate justice.

The director assists the chief justice, who oversees the state court system. Parker was sworn in last week as the state’s new chief justice after winning the November election.

In a statement announcing the appointment, Parker praised Hobson both as an innovator and someone who will help keep “leftist influences” out of the state court system.

“There is no one in Alabama who knows and understands the court system better than Rich Hobson. He is an effective, efficient, and competent administrator who has hit the ground running,” Parker said. “Like me, Rich is a strong constitutional conservative who shares my philosophy and will help me keep leftist influences out of our court system,” Parker said.

Hobson has three decades of experience in the court system. He held a variety of jobs before becoming the director of the court system, including court referral officer and managing the judicial volunteer program and the family preservation court improvement project

Moore twice named Hobson as his administrative director of courts. Hobson lost the position both times when Moore was stripped of chief justice duties by a judicial discipline panel. Moore was removed as chief justice in 2003 for disobeying a court order to remove a Ten Commandments monument from the Supreme Court building. After he was elected to the post again, Moore was suspended from the bench in 2016 after a judicial discipline panel ruled he had urged probate judges to refuse marriage licenses to gays and lesbians. Moore disputed the accusation.

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