Remarks as prepared for delivery
If it pleases the court, thank you, Chief Judge DuBose, for that generous introduction and thank you for your service to the people of Alabama.
On a more personal note, thank you for your service as one of my AUSAs, as one of my deputies when I was Alabama Attorney General, and as my Chief Counsel in the Senate. I have been so proud to see all that you have accomplished.
It is also my pleasure to recognize two superb district judges who, I am amazed to acknowledge, have recently take senior status: Judge Granade and Judge Steele. It doesn’t seem possible that the years of your service have passed so quickly. This is my first chance to publicly state my appreciation for your outstanding and honorable work. You have, like Judge DeBose, met and exceeded my every expectation – and they were high indeed.
Long before I became a senator Judge Cox once said, “I think the best politics is to appoint the best judges.” That’s what I tried to do.
Of course I also want to thank Senator Jones, and my good friend Senator Shelby. It is safe to say we wouldn’t be here without Senator Shelby’s hard work, so I want to thank him for leading the charge in this effort and to recognize the dedicated commitment to the project by Congressmen Jo Bonner and Bradley Byrne.
I also want to recognize and thank our great mayor and wonderful friend, Sandy Stimpson. He and his fine team have responded to our every and many requests.
Thank you to Ann Bedsole, Bob Spielmann, Dr. Glaize, and Administrator Murphy. Ann, thank you for a lifetime of leadership and service to this state and nation – and our community.
I always want to give a special thank you to all the law officers who are here: Marshal Andrews, Inspector Sean Carney, Officer Parnell and others.
And on a personal note, I am glad to have a partner through it all, Mary, with me here today. Would you join me in thanking her.
It is good to be home.
South Alabama has been my home for all of my life. Mary has said there will be only one more move and that will be by Radney’s. I’m so proud of Richard Moore who has returned to the office as our U.S. Attorney. He is doing a great job as chair of the U.S. Attorney General’s Advisory Committee.
I can tell you that after all my adventures, there is nothing I am more proud of than my 12 years as a United States Attorney here in Mobile.
We practiced every day before outstanding and honorable federal judges.
We took on corruption; we broke up national and international fraud schemes, and we took tons of drugs off our streets, and many violent criminals.
It was a glorious time, I must say. “Camelot” seemed a good word.
What is this day really about? We are dedicating not just a structure but our goal is to build on our unsurpassed legal heritage. It is a marvel of history, objectivity, integrity, and consistency. It is the foundation of our freedom, safety, and prosperity.
And the rule of law is not about ideology. Ideology is not law. It is much closer to politics than law. And, politics is the opposite of law.
That’s why we celebrate judges who honor their oath: to serve under the constitution and laws of the United States.
I am so proud of President Trump and the judges he is nominating to our courts. Justice Gorsuch and now Judge Kavanaugh symbolize the qualities of integrity, legal skill, and judicial restraint that judges joining lower courts all over the country, also possess.
These qualities are also preserved in our new judges here: Judge Moorer and Judge Beaverstock.
Now, many of you know that I am a frugal person. Mary might have another word for it.
But as the rule of law is one of the great jewels in this nation’s crown, it is proper that a courthouse for the United States of America reflect the august nature of the work going on inside.
This building, Judge DuBose, meets that test. I know Senator Shelby is pleased with the long and hard work you have put into this project.
In this building, criminals will be prosecuted and sentenced. Victims will be vindicated and their rights defended. Laws will be enforced and upheld. Justice will be done. The trust of the people will be earned.
But above all, in this building, the greatest legal system on Earth will continue day after day. It will be perpetuated, defended, and handed on to generations yet unborn.
It is a great pleasure for me to come home and celebrate the completion of this superb structure that stands proudly ready to fulfill its mission.
And let us resolve to fulfill ours.