Alabama Legislature Week 3: Take the gun, leave the backpack

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

It’s hard to believe that we’re already through Week 3 in the 2017 Regular Session.

Actually, wait, no it’s not. It’s very believable, since these folks work like four hours per day. They showed up at 1 on Tuesday and bounced by early afternoon on Thursday. And somewhere in the middle they found time to criticize other people for taking state money and not doing enough work.
Read More

Bentley, Strange scandal continues to dog new AG Marshall

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

New Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall is in a difficult spot, thanks to the circumstances that landed him his new role.

No matter where he goes, questions about investigations into Gov. Robert Bentley, more questions about decisions made by the former AG, Luther Strange, and even more questions about his decision to recuse from the Bentley’s investigation continue to hound him. And that’s on top of the day-to-day operation of one of Alabama’s most important offices.
Read More

Pouncey files lawsuit, alleges fraud in superintendent search

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

A candidate for the state superintendent’s position has filed a lawsuit alleging several members of the State Department of Education’s legal office, interim superintendent Philip Cleveland and state school board member Mary Scott Hunter illegally conspired to prevent him from landing the job.

In a filing with Montgomery County Circuit Court, former assistant state superintendent Craig Pouncey claims Hunter, along with Juliana Dean, James Ward and Susan Crowther – all members of the ALSDE legal department, concocted and pushed a bogus allegation that he cheated on his college dissertation. The defendants, Pouncey claims, went as far as to call Samford University to report the allegation and then pressured the Alabama Ethics Commission to provide confirmation that it was investigating the bogus claim.
Read More

The hypocrisy isn’t even surprising anymore

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

If you have dealt in politics for any length of time, you have come to expect hypocrisy.

It’s as natural as breathing.

You come to expect politicians to complain about certain groups out of one side of their mouths, then use the other side of their mouths to beg those same groups for money.

You expect righteous indignation from some politicians at the mere suggestion that they’re secretly in bed with certain groups, and you know full well that the louder the protest, the more likely it is that that politician is so deep in bed with that group, he’s underneath the fitted sheet.
Read More

Bill allowing adoption agencies to discriminate is all that’s wrong with Alabama government

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

In order to prevent discrimination, we need to discriminate.

That seemed to be the message Wednesday morning in the Senate Health and Human Services Committee meeting, as Sen. Bill Hightower pushed a bill that would purportedly protect religiously-affiliated adoption agencies from discrimination by the State.

Or to put that another way – a way Hightower repeatedly refused to say out loud – the bill allows Christian adoption agencies that don’t want to place children with gay couples to do so without facing a loss of their State licenses for discrimination.
Read More

Bill pushing armed security forces at churches suffers setback

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Apparently, Alabama churches are boiling over with potential violence.

At the Alabama House Judiciary Committee meeting on Wednesday, Rep. Lynn Greer, R-Rogersville, proposed legislation to protect church-goers from that violence – a bill that would authorize armed church security forces to receive firearms training by police departments or sheriffs.

“Oh, you’d be surprised,” Greer said of potential violence within Alabama’s churches following the meeting. Committee chairman Mike Jones elected to hold Greer’s bill over so Greer would have time to make changes and get support from law enforcement associations.
Read More

Ticketmaster v. StubHub in a House committee meeting

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The fight for the secondary ticket market – between household names such as Ticketmaster and StubHub – has moved to Alabama’s Legislature.

At a House public hearing on Wednesday, attorneys and lobbyists representing both of those companies were on hand to make their pitches for and against a bill sponsored by Rep. Paul Lee. That bill would seemingly make one minor change in the way tickets to concerts, sporting events and other entertainment acts are sold – it would require the tickets be transferrable.
Read More

Two more ASU trustees rejected by Senate

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Two more people nominated to serve on Alabama State University’s Board of Trustees have been rejected by the Alabama Senate.

Houston attorney Claudine James and Fred Frost, a vice president at LogiCore Corporation in Huntsville were nixed by the Senate last week. Both were supporters of former president Gwendolyn Boyd, and Frost advocated for Boyd during her termination hearing in December.

Montgomery County Circuit Clerk Tiffany McCord and Brenda Hunter, a high-level government consultant, were both approved and will continue to serve on the board.
Read More

Lawmaker: Letter proves Governor knows he’s breaking the law

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The Governor is breaking the law and he knows it.

That was the opinion of State Rep. Chris England, a former prosecutor, on social media Tuesday night, as he again challenged Gov. Robert Bentley’s plans to schedule an election to fill Jeff Sessions’ Senate seat during the General Election in 2018.

England was prompted to speak out again on Tuesday after the Governor’s legal advisors released a letter to members of the Legislature that essentially placed the blame for the long delay in holding the election on State lawmakers.
Read More

Task force to explore removing grocery tax

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Want to repeal the tax on food in Alabama?

There’s a task force for that.

In what has quickly become Gov. Robert Bentley’s go-to move for dealing with complicated issues that are popular with voters, the Governor on Tuesday signed an executive order forming a committee to study the effects of removing the grocery sales tax.

“I’ve traveled the State, and I know that people not only want good jobs, they want to feed their families,” Bentley said. “I’d like to see this tax – this 4 percent – repealed and not replaced with any tax burdens on these working families.”
Read More

© Copyright 2016 Alabama Political Reporter