Roy Moore lost his job as Alabama's chief justice eight years ago when he steadfastly refused to remove a Ten Commandments monument from the grounds of the state Supreme Court building, even after a federal judge ordered him to do so.
In the opening phase of a potential White House run, Moore is now promising to bring the same single-minded dedication to the presidency.
''I took a stand when no one else would,'' Moore said during a recent visit to Fort Dodge.
Moore is considering a bid for the Republican presidential nomination. He said he's been touring the country since August 2010, and added that many people have asked him to run for president. He recently formed a presidential exploratory committee.
''I think we're in the most critical position in our country that we've had since the very beginning,'' Moore said. ''We're in a crisis of economic, constitutional and moral proportions.''
He listed same-sex marriage and homosexuality in the military among the moral problems he sees facing the country. Moore previously came to Iowa to protest the 2009 state Supreme Court decision that legalized same-sex marriage.
About Roy Moore
Home: Montgomery, Ala,
Family: Wife, Kayla, four children, three grandchildren
Education: Law degree from the University of Alabama School of Law, Tuscaloosa, Ala.; graduate of the United States Military Academy, West Point, N.Y.; graduate of Etowah High School, Attalla, Ala,
Experience: Chairman of the board, Foundation for Moral Law, 2004 to the present; chief justice, Alabama Supreme Court, 2001-2003; circuit judge, 16th Judicial Circuit of Alabama, 1992-2001; private practice attorney, 1984-1992; deputy district attorney, Etowah County, Ala., 1977-1982.
Military: Army, 1969-1974
Moore became known as the ''Ten Commandments judge'' in the wake of his 2003 stand over the monument. When he did not obey the federal district court's order to remove the monument, Alabama's judicial ethics panel removed him from office.
''Does the Constitution prohibit the acknowledgment of a sovereign God?'' Moore said, ''That's the question. The federal district court said it does. Well, that contradicts every state constitution in our country. The Iowa State Constitution certainly acknowledges God, as does the Alabama constitution. And for a federal court judge to say you cannot acknowledge the sovereignty of the Judeo-Christian God is hypocrisy.''
Moore said he would cut spending and reduce the size of the federal government if he's elected.
He said he would eliminate the Department of Education and the $4.35 billion the federal government spends annually on education. He said there is no authority under the Constitution for a U.S. Department of Education.
The federal debt limit should not be raised, Moore said. He called raising the limit ''an excuse to avoid cutting spending.''
Moore added that he would end American involvement in the air strikes in Libya, which he called ''absolutely unconstitutional.''
He called for withdrawing troops from Afghanistan and Iraq unless Congress declares war on those countries.
Contact Bill Shea at (515) 573-2141 or firstname.lastname@example.org