There is already a fix to clarify and strengthen the ethics laws

February 1, 2018

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Before then Attorney General Luther Strange took his ill-fated appointment to the U.S. Senate, his office prepared legislation to clarify and strengthen existing ethics laws.

Amidst all the nascent posturing about a dire need to, “Reform and Clarify” current ethics laws, there seems to be a pretense that no such clarification exists and, therefore, the Legislature needs to do something.

One proposal is to establish a committee to make recommendations for ethics reforms before the 2019 Session is currently the preferred solution thereby stalling any reform measures while giving special interests groups sufficient time to work to muddy laws that hinder their businesses.

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A great movie, but would anyone believe it?

April 19, 2017

INSIDE THE STATEHOUSE
by Steve Flowers

We in the Deep South have a unique history of political theatrics. The only northern states that rival our colorfulness are New Jersey and Illinois. In those two states you are expected to be corrupt, especially Chicago.

Our most colorful southern state has always been Louisiana. The parishes and bayous of the Pelican State gave us Huey Long and other characters. No other states can hold a candle to Louisiana’s brazen corruption. They not only expect their politicians to steal and cavort, they frown on them if they do not. The environment of Louisiana politics is bred towards corruption and debauchery. They not only gave us the glamour of the King Fish, Huey Long, they are proud of their infamous reputation.
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Indian Casino owners interview potential governor Tuberville

April 10, 2017

 

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

While the Ethics Commission was interviewing witnesses on Union Street last Wednesday to determine if there was probable cause to refer felony charges against Gov. Robert Bentley, members of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians (PCI) were meeting on High Street to see if former Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville was going to play ball with them. Tuberville wants to be the governor, and the Tribal Casino owners want to buy one.
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Update: Strange’s replacement, Bentley’s folly and a host of questionable acts overshadow Sessions’ Replacement

February 10, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

While Washington D.C. politicians and many here in Alabama publicly congratulated Attorney General Luther Strange on his appointment to the US Senate, the overwhelming reaction among reporters and politicos ranges from negative to outrage.

Among the chattering classes and in legal circles, Strange’s appointment to fill the vacancy left by Sen. Jeff Sessions resignation to become the nation’s Attorney General is seen as little more than a quid pro quo among political rivals.
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Legislators call for resumed impeachment investigation after Bentley appoints Strange to Senate

February 10, 2017

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY — Before hopping on a plane to head to Washington, Gov. Robert Bentley and newly appointed US Sen. Luther Strange attempted to assuage concerns over possible conflicts of interest related to Strange’s appointment.

Bentley announced Thursday that Strange would replace former Sen. Jeff Sessions as Alabama’s next senator after Sessions was confirmed Wednesday night by the US Senate as President Donald Trump’s attorney general.

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Governor appoints Attorney General Luther Strange as Alabama’s next US senator

February 9, 2017

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY — Gov. Robert Bentley will appoint Attorney General Luther Strange as Alabama’s next US Senator.

Strange’s appointment comes after the Senate confirmed Jeff Sessions as the next US Attorney General last night. Sessions, who served as a Senator for more than two decades, delivered his resignation to Bentley late last night.

“This is truly a remarkable time in our state’s history,” Bentley said Thursday morning. “Alabama has surely been well represented by Senator Sessions, and I am confident Senator Strange will serve as a fine representative for our people.

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Bentley confidant tops list of possible AG replacement as new ethics complaint surfaces

January 26, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

High-ranking government officials and those close to Governor Robert Bentley are saying, that Attorney General Luther Strange is strongly being considered to replace Sen. Jeff Sessions upon his confirmation as US Attorney General. And of the many names being floated to fill Strange’s position, one name has risen to the top: Bentley’s close associate, Cooper Shattuck.

Friends and critics alike speaking on background say, for Bentley to appoint Shattuck would not only raise eyebrows, but it could also have unwelcome consequences.
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Judiciary Committee waiting for OK from Strange to continue Bentley impeachment

January 26, 2017

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—One person is holding up the impeachment investigation into Gov. Robert Bentley.

On Wednesday, House Judiciary Chairman Mike Jones told reporters that his committee would not continue an impeachment probe into the Governor until Attorney General Luther Strange gives them the all clear.

“Whenever the Attorney General has reached a point that we are able to resume, we will resume,” Jones said. “I’ve always said, and I will continue to say, we are going to finish what we started. I’m just not able to say when it will be.”

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Governor suggests investigation into information leaked to APR

January 24, 2017

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Gov. Robert Bentley on Monday suggested retaliation for leaks to The Alabama Political Reporter about an ongoing Ethics Commission investigation surrounding his relationship with Rebekah Mason, one of his former top political advisers.

Bentley, speaking to reporters in Montgomery at the winter meeting of the Alabama Sheriff’s Association, said that the person who shared with APR had broken the law by giving details to the media concerning an active ethics investigation.

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Alabama judicial override safe from Supreme Court review

January 24, 2017

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—The US Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear a challenge to Alabama’s system of judicial override for the death penalty from several death-row inmates in the State.

In a list of orders on pending cases released Monday, the Court denied certiorari in the case of Thomas Arthur v. Alabama. Arthur and two other death-row inmates petitioned the high court in November to review Alabama’s death row laws.

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