Governor Announces 7-Member Special Supreme Court to Hear Moore’s Appeal

October 31, 2016

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—On Monday, Gov. Robert Bentley announced the seven members of the Special Supreme Court that will hear Chief Justice Roy Moore’s appeal.

Sitting on the panel, Bentley announced, will be H. Edward McFerrin, a retired circuit judge from Lowndes, Butler and Crenshaw counties; Robert G. Cahill, a retired Jefferson County district judge; William R. King, a retired Crenshaw County district judge; James H. Reid Jr., a retired Baldwin County circuit judge; Lynn Clardy Bright, a retried Montgomery County district judge; Ralph A. Ferguson Jr., a retired Jefferson County circuit judge; and John D. Coggin, a retired Cherokee County district judge.
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Depositions Suggest Blue Cross/Blue Shield Rate Variations Were Kept from Lawmakers, Public

October 31, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Newly released depositions in a class-action antitrust lawsuit against Blue Cross/Blue Shield (BCBS) give rise to charges of inflated rates and a nationally coordinated plan to control insurance markets, according to federal court filings.

A written statement received by The Alabama Political Reporter claims, “Blue Cross and Blue Shield are defendants in a series of federal class actions alleging that the Blues are engaging in a nationwide conspiracy to suppress competition in violation of federal antitrust law, including unlawfully conspiring to divide up their respective markets and agreeing to suppress competition among themselves within those markets artificially.”
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Systematic Venality Renders State Government Suspect

October 31, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Theodore Roosevelt once said, “When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer ‘Present’ or ‘Not Guilty’.”

Corruption is a pervasive reality in all branches of our State government, and our lawmakers and media selectively look away far too often.

In the Executive Branch, Governor Robert Bentley is under investigation by both Federal and State law enforcement.

The Judicial Branch is refusing to unseal court records in the case against Chief Justice Roy Moore.
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Federal Judge Blocks Two Alabama Pro-Life Laws

October 31, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Thursday, October 27, 2016, Federal Judge Myron Thompson issued a preliminary injunction blocking two Pro-Life bills that were passed in the 2016 Regular Session regulating abortions in Alabama.

The first law would prohibit abortion from operating within 2,000ft of a K-8 school. That law would have closed two of Alabama’s five abortion clinics immediately.

The order also blocked a law that would ban have banned dismemberment abortions. Supporters claim that dismemberment abortions are a “very safe method of abortion that’s standard practice for physicians in the second trimester”.
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Shelby Sends Letter to Comey

October 31, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

In July, FBI Director James Comey denounced former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s mis-handling of classified material, but said that while careless and reckless, there was no criminal intent. Thus, he was closing the investigation against Mrs. Clinton without bringing the matter before a grand jury. This move angered many inside the FBI and Republicans accused Comey of acting improperly. While the FBI stopped investigating, independent journalists and news gathering organizations, particularly the controversial Wiki-Leaks, continued their investigations, uncovering thousands of Clinton emails that the FBI thought were unrecoverable. Now, Director Comey has announced that the FBI is reopening its investigation, just 11 days before the Presidential election.
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Ward Urges “Yes” Vote on Amendment 14

October 31, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Tuesday, November 8, 2016, Alabama voters go for to the polls to decide whether they want Donald J Trump (R) or Hillary R. Clinton (D) to be the next President of the United States and other races; but on the back of the ballot there are fourteen Alabama Constitutional Amendments that the state legislature wants voters to pass.

State Senator Cam Ward (R-Alabaster) is the sponsor of Amendment fourteen which was passed in the August Special Session. Sen. Ward talked to The Alabama Political Reporter where Ward urged voters to ratify this amendment.
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Roy Moore Bolts Hearing; Judges to Hear Appeal Selected

October 28, 2016

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

It didn’t take long for the Alabama Supreme Court judges lottery to turn contentious.

Before the court clerks even began to draw the names of the retired judges who will be asked to hear Chief Justice Roy Moore’s appeal of his suspension from the bench, Moore’s attorney interrupted to point out that a motion to continue the proceedings hasn’t yet been heard. That motion challenges the Supreme Court justices’ authority to select the judges, since the judges have recused themselves from the case.
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Alabama Saw Second Worst Education Funding Decline Since 2008, Report Says

October 28, 2016

By Chip Brownlee
The Alabama Political Reporter

Montgomery—Of all the 50 states across the US, Alabama’s K-12 education budget saw the nation’s second worst decline in funding per student during the Great Recession and that funding has not yet been restored to pre-2008 levels, according to a new non-partisan report.

Alabama’s K-12 education funding per student in fiscal year 2017, which began Oct.1, is still 14.2 percent less than it was in fiscal year 2008, according to the report published by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. The numbers are adjusted for inflations.

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Parker Warns Judiciary’s Fate at Stake

October 28, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday, October 25, 2016, Alabama Supreme Court Justice Tom Parker (R) released a statement endorsing Donald Trump for President of the United States. Parker said that the future of the courts is at stake in this election and that, “Is why I am supporting the Trump-Pence ticket in November and why all conservatives should join me.”

Justice Parker wrote in a statement, “From my perspective as a judge currently serving on a state supreme court, the most important issue in this election is the future of the judiciary. The rule of law, upon which the exceptionalism of America rests, is at stake.”
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Court Justices or Court Jesters?: The Mishandling of the Moore Case

October 28, 2016

By Hannah Ford

You know it’s bad when one of Chief Justice Roy Moore’s harshest critics (apologetically) writes in his defense.

You know it’s bad when Justices refuse to unseal a critical case.

You know it’s bad when the unethical behavior of acting Chief Justice Lyn Stuart and her accomplices have Alabamians worried that they may not receive a fair trial in the State’s highest court.

On Thursday, Governor Robert Bentley and acting Chief Justice Lyn Stuart came together to oversee the drawing of seven retired judges who will hear the appeal of suspended Chief Justice Roy Moore (because everyone knows Bentley and Stuart are totally trustworthy!). Before the eyes of the public and the media, fifty names were drawn at “random” and then the seven who will sit on the Special Court were drawn at random.
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