Did you not learn anything from Siegelman?

February 10, 2017

By Beth Clayton
Alabama Political Reporter

I’ve never hit the backspace key as many times when writing a column as I did while starting this one.

Anybody who knows me can testify that I’m never at a loss for words. Ever. I hardly shut up. Opinions? I have one on every topic ranging from health care policy to bread pudding.

But Luther Strange being appointed to the United States Senate? I’m at a loss for words. They aren’t even bothering to hide the corruption anymore. I’m so over it.
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Okay, campers, rise and shine! And don’t forget your booties because it’s cold out there today!

February 3, 2017

By Beth Clayton
Alabama Political Reporter

It’s rare that a Groundhog Day really feels like Groundhog Day, but Thursday as I slapped my alarm clock and picked up my phone, I felt like I was trapped in a Bill Murray movie.

Babe. I got you, babe. I got you, babe.

The House Republican Caucus released their 2017 Legislative agenda, which looked remarkably like every Legislative agenda they’ve released since 2011.

Immigration. Abortion. Confederate monuments. Roll tide.
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Young Democrats Debate Watch

October 21, 2016

By Beth Clayton
Alabama Political Reporter

BIRMINGHAM—Young Democrats across Alabama hosted public watch parties for the last presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump on Wednesday night.

The Alabama Young Democrats, a statewide organization, along with members of their Birmingham, East Alabama and North-Central Alabama chapters, hosted a joint watch party with the Hillary Clinton campaign at the Historic Carver Theatre in downtown Birmingham. More than 250 attendees packed the theatre, booing and cheering together throughout the debate.
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We Can’t Expect Change Without Voting For It, Too

September 15, 2016

By Beth Clayton
Alabama Political Reporter

On Tuesday, Joe Lovvorn narrowly prevailed in a field of four candidates for the GOP nomination to fill former Speaker Mike Hubbard’s seat in the Alabama House of Representatives. Hubbard vacated his seat under State law when he was convicted of more felonies than you can count on both hands.

Campaign finance records show that Lovvorn was backed by many of the same high-dollar Montgomery brokers who rolled Hubbard into power.
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Why Alabama Missed The Boat On Medicaid… And Which Southern State Got It Right

September 6, 2016

By Beth Clayton
Alabama Political Reporter

In 2011, then-Governor Steve Beshear implemented Managed Care Organizations in Kentucky, taking a trial-model that had been in place since 1997 and expanding it into a full program. Moving half a million Medicaid recipients into Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) was estimated to save the commonwealth $1.3 billion over three years, $375 million of which would be saved in the general fund budget.

At the time, Governor Beshear opted for the MCO system rather than making rate cuts in order to close a $142.4 million shortfall in the biennial Medicaid budget. Under the MCOs, each of the three providers would be given an amount of money per Medicaid patient, shifting the risk for increasing costs from the state onto the MCO–if patients stay healthy, MCOs make money; if patients need more medical treatment, MCOs lose money. The goal behind the MCOs is for the providers to take a greater interest in prevention, thereby encouraging prophylactic procedures over treating sickness. For example, it’s more cost efficient for the MCO to cover a mammogram for early cancer detection than to pay for chemotherapy and an eventual mastectomy if breast cancer develops.
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Governor’s Emotional Appeals Aren’t Fooling Anyone

September 1, 2016

By Beth Clayton
Alabama Political Reporter

I usually follow the #ALpolitics hashtag on Twitter, and it’s usually good for up-to-date news and up-to-date laughs. Lately, those laughs have come from the Governor’s account–he’s taken to the Twittersphere multiple times in the last week to emphasize the growing need to fully fund Medicaid, highlighting faces of people–particularly children–whose coverage would be at risk without a state lottery.

Governor, don’t be ridiculous. Don’t play the pity card now, after you’ve spent the past two years denying Medicaid expansion that would save an estimated 600 lives every year.
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Hubbard’s “Friends” Defense is Wishful Thinking

June 8, 2016

By Beth Clayton

Last week, I sat in on part of the Mike Hubbard criminal trial and listened to witnesses gush about what a great friend they consider Hubbard, how they love him “like a brother,” and how would do anything for him. This theme is, no doubt, part of the defense’s strategy to utilize the “friends” loophole in the state ethics laws that have brought Hubbard before a jury of his peers on 23 felony counts.
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Former Associated Press and Birmingham Post Herald Political Reporter Bob Johnson Has Died

May 16, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Friday, May 14, renown political reporter, Bob Johnson, passed away at his son’s home in Gardendale, due to a massive stroke. He was 66. In his highly acclaimed career, Johnson was a witness to five decades of Alabama Politics with the Birmingham Post Herald, Montgomery Advertiser, and his last fourteen with the Associated Press (AP). Johnson retired in 2014 due to health problems. Bob Johnson was well liked by just about everyone in the capital press corps and most newsmakers.
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Young Democrats Clash Over Endorsements

January 20, 2016

By Brandon Moseley and Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

On Wednesday, January 13, the Jefferson County Young Democrats announced their endorsements in the 2016 Democratic Primary races on March 1. The Alabama Young Democrats (AYD), however, were quick to offer their view: that Alabama Young Democrats are prohibited from making endorsements under their Constitution.

The Jefferson County Young Democrats are listed on the AYD website as an officially recognized chapter, however endorsing candidates “prior to the primary cycle of elections” is reportedly prohibited by the AYD Constitution.
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Jefferson County Young Democrats Endorse Hillary Clinton

January 14, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Wednesday, January 13, 2016, the Jefferson County Young Democrats (JCYD) Political Action Committee released its endorsements for the March 1, 2016 Democratic Primary Election.

Jefferson County Young Democrats President Le’Darius Hilliard said in a statement, “The Jefferson County Young Democrats are proud to endorse a slate of qualified candidates for elected office. After a through screening process, we are confident that this group of incumbent elected officials and candidates for office are committed to serving the people of Jefferson County and young people in particular. The Jefferson County Young Democrats will work diligently to register and educate voters as well as turn out Democrats to the polls on March 1, 2016.”
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