Bentley notes: Marsh threat, Strange promises over Senate seat

September 19, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

In interviews for Jeff Sessions’ vacant Senate seat, Luther Strange promised to “do more” to help former Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley. And state Sen. Del Marsh, R-Anniston, “seemed angry” and allegedly threatened to “f—k with” Bentley for the next two years if he wasn’t appointed, according to handwritten notes Bentley made from the interviews.

Those notes, forwarded to the Alabama Archives and obtained by The Alabama Political Reporter, show that Bentley ranked the six candidates – who Bentley interviewed – in six different categories: Interview strength, their appointment’s trickle-down effect on the state, knowledge of federal issues, Republican delegation relations, recommendations and direct benefit the candidates would have on the state if appointed.

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Analysis: Montgomery intervention failing despite local support

September 17, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

There is a misconception with the state takeover of Montgomery Public Schools.

Everyone seems to think that MPS officials don’t want it.

That’s untrue.

Board members made it clear this week that even those who are currently actively engaged in an ongoing AEA lawsuit against the intervention are open to it continuing after the resignation last week of Michael Sentance.

And that fact, probably more than any other, is a perfect example of the complicated chore an intervention – especially one in a large district – is, and how poorly Sentance managed the one in Montgomery.
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We should hold law enforcement officers to a higher standard

September 15, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

On the video, the man is on his knees, his hands bound behind him, but he is calm, barely moving.

Suddenly, another person in the room walks over and hits the bound man. Hard. Unable to defend himself, he starts to slump forward, curling his body into a fetal position, trying to protect himself the best he can.

But the beating continues. Two, three, four swings.

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Sentance’s resignation: There’s one person to blame

September 14, 2017
Alabama Superintendent Michael Sentance

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The relatively short state education nightmare is over.

Michael Sentance resigned on Wednesday, bowing out a day before he was sure to be fired by a state Board of Education long tired of dealing with him.

The end of Sentance’s tenure was, ironically, the one thing he managed to handle appropriately.

Quiet. Respectful. Appropriately communicated.

Had Sentance demonstrated those three qualities a bit more regularly in his day-to-day efforts as schools’ chief, he would likely still be with us.

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When voting in Senate special election, think of yourself

September 12, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

One candidate doesn’t know what DACA is. The other candidate doesn’t know what the truth is.

That’s what you’re left with in the Republican runoff for a U.S. Senate seat.

Roy Moore v. Luther Strange.

Two candidates who most of us don’t want.

A judge who keeps getting himself tossed off the bench and a malleable lawyer who will conform to any position if it means he gets to never really work again.
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ASU expected to name Quinton Ross president, but not without needless controversy

September 8, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Alabama State University’s trustees will name Quinton Ross as the school’s new president at a board meeting on Friday afternoon.

This will not be a surprise to anyone even remotely close to the university. Sources close to the board told APR early in the search process that Ross would be the frontrunner for the job if he decided to apply for the position again.

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Alabama’s education circus never stops

September 7, 2017
Alabama Superintendent Michael Sentance

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The Alabama State Department of Education circus keeps chugging along.

As department staff and superintendent Michael Sentance gear up for an all-important board meeting next week – yet another meeting that could bring an end to Sentance’s tenure – ALSDE has been dealing with fires on a number of fronts.

News of Sentance’s decision to fire popular deputy superintendent Jeff Langham has angered most of the state’s education community. Several sources have told APR that State Board members were also angered by the move and see it as the final indication that a future with Sentance at the helm is unworkable.

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Stop acting surprised by Jeff Sessions’ racism

September 6, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Jeff Sessions is a racist.

I have grown tired of people telling me that he’s not, and then using some contrived example of a time when Jeff Sessions didn’t exhibit the tendencies of a hood-wearing, cross-burning racist to prove the point.

Oh, this one time, Jeff Sessions saw a black man crossing the street and didn’t try to run him down!

Racism has defined this man and his career from the very start. From the time when his racist behavior as a U.S. Attorney prevented his confirmation by Congress as a District Court judge to his dreadful work as Alabama’s AG to his pathetic blocking of immigration reform and pretty much any aid for minorities to his abhorrent work as the U.S. Attorney General.

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Legal lottery, gaming in Alabama isn’t progress, it’s common sense

August 30, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Gov. Kay Ivey wants to allow Alabama citizens to vote on a lottery.

Her office said so this week to APR Editor in Chief, Bill Britt.

This is what passes for progress in Alabama. A Governor allowing voters to decide on a potential revenue source that could drastically alter the way this State does business.

Why we’re still discussing this topic, I have no idea. Alabama is broke. Alabama loves to gamble. Alabama already has legal gambling.

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Remember the failed Daycare Regulation bill? Now a child has died

August 25, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

If Kamden Johnson lived in a better state, one governed by better people, he’d be alive today.

Unfortunately, in his five short years on earth, Kamden found himself in Alabama, where people like Senators Larry Stutts and Shay Shelnutt and Representatives Jim Carns and Randall Shedd hold some power.

And because of those men and their power, along with their greed and their stupidity, five-year-old Kamden was left locked in a day care van for hours on a hot day earlier this week. Police believe he died in the van.

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