Alabama chief justice refuses to recognize same-sex marriageDays before Alabama’s stay on gay marriage expires, Chief Justice Roy Moore told probate judges they’re not obligated to issue marriage licenses. His bold words of encouragement laud state sovereignty and disregard last month’s ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Ginny Granade allowing a Mobile lesbian couple to obtain a marriage license. “Lower federal courts are without authority to impose their own interpretation of federal constitutional law upon the state courts,” Moore wrote in one of two memorandums obtained by AL.com last week. His memos address Gov. Robert Bentley, asking him to not recognize gay marriage as well, and “weary, beleaguered, and perplexed probate judges” with instructions on how to “unravel the meaning of the actions of the federal district court in Mobile.” Moore, who has a history of speaking against gay marriage and abortion, insists his memos had nothing to do with his religious stance, though he is the same judge who lost his job over installing a monument celebrating the Ten Commandments at the Alabama Judicial Building. He also said last year he was unable to separate his faith from his job. “Defiance” had nothing to do with his memo either. Granade’s decision fueled his crusade because it lacked constitutional authority, he wrote.  “The rulings in the marriage cases do not require you to issue marriage license that are illegal under Alabama law,” Moore told Alabama’s probate judges. A stay puts Granade’s ruling and much-desired weddings on hold until Feb. 9 pending any appeals or a long-anticipated decision later this year by the U.S. Supreme Court. More