Alabama Legislature Recap Week 9: All questions, no answers

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Question: What happened in the Alabama Legislature this past week?

  1. Lawmakers wasted time and money, like always.
  2. Lawmakers passed embarrassing, illegal legislation.
  3. Lawmakers got into entertaining arguments.
  4. All of the above.

It’s always “All of the above.”

Let’s recap this nonsense.

Civically speaking

One of the most entertaining debates of the week came as the House attempted to pass a bill sponsored by Sen. Arthur Orr, which he had already ushered through the Senate, to require that Alabama high school students pass a civics test prior to graduating.
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Legislature a step away from abolishing marriage licenses

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Alabama is one step closer to the elimination of marriage licenses.

The House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, voting straight down party lines, moved forward a bill that would abolish the licenses. The bill, which has already passed the Senate, now goes to the full House for approval.

It did not go without criticism.

Reps. Merika Coleman and Juandalynn Givan spent several minutes grilling the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Greg Albritton, and pointing out the flaws of the bill. Their primary complaint was easy to identify: the bill potentially creates a number of problems for State citizens while actually changing almost nothing.
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It doesn’t have to be like this, Alabama

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

At any other time, in any other State, the events of Wednesday in Alabama would have been big news.

The State’s Supreme Court Chief Justice was officially suspended from office for the remainder of his term. The Court of the Judiciary had already suspended Roy Moore, but he had appealed that decision to a special Alabama Supreme Court, which upheld the suspension.

That’s big news, right?
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Lawmaker wants House to condemn Rebekah Mason

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Rep. Johnny Mack Morrow wants to make sure that Rebekah Mason – the alleged mistress of former Gov. Robert Bentley – doesn’t escape punishment for her role in the year-long scandal that’s engulfed this State.

Morrow on Wednesday introduced a resolution that he wants the House to consider that would encourage the Attorney General’s office to investigate Mason for potential criminal activity, apologize to those hurt by her actions, condemn those actions and applaud Bentley’s ex-wife, Diane, for her strength and integrity.
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Luther Strange and a very bad choice

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday was not a good day for Luther Strange.

Alabama’s appointed US Senator found out by way of a phone call from Gov. Kay Ivey that she was reversing course and calling a Special Election to be held later this year for the seat Strange currently holds.

Strange, Alabama’s former Attorney General, is the only announced candidate for that seat. And he was banking on staying in it until Nov. 2018, when, if his plan worked, he would be officially elected to that seat.
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Taylor hire wrong for many reasons

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The biggest problem with Bryan Taylor serving as general counsel to the governor of Alabama – which he is as of Monday – isn’t so much that he’s tied to former Gov. Bob Riley and the spring from which so much political corruption in this State has flowed.

Don’t get me wrong. Taylor is absolutely connected to the Riley Machine – is one of the main cogs, in fact – but that’s not the biggest problem.
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Alabama Legislature Recap Week 8: Shhhh! Maybe they won’t notice

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Here’s breaking news: The Alabama Legislature did Legislature stuff this week.

That’s right, while you were busy watching the Luv Guv love himself right out of office in the weirdest way yet, our Senators and Representatives were discussing and voting on legislation.

Most of it was incredibly dumb, and provided clear evidence that our lawmakers mostly don’t care about the constitution, will choose money over kids and apparently don’t watch “Game of Thrones.”
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The End of Robert Bentley: Part III

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The end for Robert Bentley came several times in his final 48 hours as Governor.

Sources close to the Governor, including two who were present for portions of the negotiations that ultimately led to his resignation, said Bentley backed away from agreements to resign twice between mid-afternoon Saturday and early Monday morning. And those were in addition to stepping away from a near-resignation for health reasons two weeks earlier.
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An idea worth considering

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The Republicans in the Alabama Legislature have a little explaining to do.

No, seriously. I need them to explain something to me. And to you, the people who vote for them.

For the past several weeks, through committee meeting after committee meeting at the State House, I have watched Republicans disagree with other Republicans on a variety of very important, very serious topics. Everything from gun rights to abortion to same-sex couples’ rights.
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House members file JIC complaint against judge over Bentley ruling

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Several House Republicans have filed an official complaint with the Judicial Inquiry Commission alleging Montgomery County Circuit Court Judge Greg Griffin violated several canons of judicial ethics by failing to recuse from a temporary restraining order request filed last week by former Gov. Robert Bentley.

Rep. Corey Harbison (R-Cullman) and around a dozen other House members filed the complaint, which also alleges a history of violations by Griffin.
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