Lyn Stuart becomes State’s second female Chief Justice

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY — For the first time in Alabama’s history, women are at the helm of two of the State’s Branches of Government.

On Wednesday, Gov. Kay Ivey appointed Associate Justice Lyn Stuart to lead Alabama’s judicial system as Supreme Court Chief Justice. Stuart, only the second woman to become chief justice in the state, had been serving as Acting Chief Justice since Chief Justice Roy Moore’s suspension in May 2016.

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An executive amendment from the Governor could hold up controversial adoption bill

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY — Gov. Kay Ivey is considering an executive amendment to a controversial bill passed by the Alabama Legislature this week that would give faith-based adoption agencies the right to deny services to same-sex couples.

Ivey is considering a relatively minor change to the bill, sources close to the governor have told the Alabama Political Reporter. But applying an executive amendment to the bill would send it back to the Legislature for another round of votes, where it could get lost in the chaos as the end of the 2017 legislative session looms.

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Tommy Tuberville decides against gubernatorial run

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

AUBURN — Former Auburn Football coach Tommy Tuberville has decided against stepping into the political arena, forgoing his possible run for governor next year, a top aide confirmed.

Tripp Skipper, who was assisting with Tuberville’s exploratory campaign, confirmed that Tuberville decided he won’t seek the Republican Party’s nomination for the State’s highest office.

“After a lot of thought and prayer, he just felt like the timing wasn’t right,” Skipper said. “He decided to forgo the race to pursue other opportunities.”

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Wallace-Dothan recognized as one of nation’s best two-year colleges

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

Alabama’s Wallace Community College-Dothan has been recognized as one of the nation’s top two-year colleges by the American Association of Community Colleges.

The community college, led by President Linda Young, received  the AACC’s Award of Excellence for Student Success at the association’s annual conference in New Orleans on Monday.

Wallace-Dothan, Alabama’s fastest growing community college, was recognized for successfully implementing the I-CAN instructional initiative, Improvement, Constant and Never Ending, which is intended to close the gap between socioeconomic status and completion rates.

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More than 90 Legislative Districts could be redrawn as part of Reapportionment Plan

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY  — More than 90 Legislative Districts could be realigned under the Senate Republicans’ current Reapportionment Plan, according to the top Republican on the committee handling the changes.

In an interview Thursday, Sen. Gerald Dial said as many as 66 Legislative House districts in Alabama and 25 Senate districts could be redrawn or tweaked as part of their plan that could be presented in a public hearing as soon as next week.

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Senate passes symbolic Legislation to declare Alabama a “Pro-Life State”

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY — The State Senate voted largely along party lines Thursday to pass three pieces of Legislation that would declare Alabama a “Pro-Life State” in its constitution, give an opt-out option to health care workers and officially outlaw assisted suicide.

The bills were passed in a marathon of pro-life legislation that was scheduled as part of the Senate Republicans’ “Pro-Life Legislation Day.”

With the Senate’s vote Thursday of 25-7, the constitutional amendment, co-sponsored by Sen. Phil Williams (R-Rainbow City) moves a step closer to becoming law. It will need another round of approval from the House, then of voters statewide before it is added to the Alabama’s lengthy constitution.

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Republican Caucus to hold Pro-Life Day in Alabama Senate today

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY — Alabama’s Senate Republicans are designating Thursday as “Pro-Life Legislation Day” in the Alabama Senate. They plan to consider several bills that would affect assisted suicide and declare Alabama a Pro-Life State.

Three bills are on the Senate schedule for tomorrow: The first would ban assisted suicide in Alabama, the second proposes a constitutional amendment to officially declare Alabama a Pro-Life State and the third would allow healthcare workers to opt out of participating in abortions, according to the bills’ sponsors.

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Special Supreme Court upholds suspension of Chief Justice Roy Moore

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

The Special Supreme Court empaneled to hear Chief Justice Roy Moore’s appeal has upheld his permanent suspension, which lasts until his term ends in 2019. The suspension effectively ended his judicial career.

The Court of the Judiciary — a nine-member panel that reviews ethics complaints against the State’s judges — suspended Moore on Sept. 30 for issuing an administrative order, which the Court ruled was as a violation of the Alabama Canons of Judicial Ethics.

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White Nationalist speech at Auburn ends with mostly peaceful protests

Photo: Dakota Sumpter / The Auburn Plainsman


By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

AUBURN— White nationalist leader Richard Spencer, known for coining the term “alt-right,” faced down the administrative opposition and hundreds of protestors to speak at Auburn University Tuesday night.

Inside the event, Spencer, who became known nationally for being punched at an anti-Trump rally in January, spoke to a crowd of more than three hundred — about half of which were actually students at Auburn. Others appeared to middle-aged supporters of Spencer’s.

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More departures as staff shakeup continues in the Governor’s Office

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY — Gov. Kay Ivey has accepted the resignation of several more staff holdovers from Gov. Robert Bentley’s resignation as a shakeup in the Governor’s Office continues.

Zach Lee, the former director of local and government affairs for Bentley, has been let go from the Governor’s staff, the Governor’s spokesperson said Monday. Franklin Johnson, Bentley’s former deputy chief of staff, and Jake Jakobs, Bentley’s aide-de-camp, are also departing the Governor’s Office, sources have told APR.

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