By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter
MONTGOMERY—This week, Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard, R-Auburn, will be a panelist at an ethics and leadership summit in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
The fact that Hubbard is under investigation by the State’s Attorney General’s Office, might cause some to find a stomach-churning irony in Hubbard being chosen to be a participant in such an event.
The summit is being presented by the State Legislative Leaders Foundation and the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics.
According to Stephen G. Lakis, President of State Legislative Leaders Foundation, the event will, in-part, focus on “how new media and technology is reshaping the political landscape and creating a situation in which everything you do, say and write is instantaneously a permanent part of the public record.”
Lakis says that leaders present will hear, “a first-hand account from a prominent, former legislative leader, whose political career was cut short because he simply couldn’t handle the power that went with the job.” And no, he is not referring to Speaker Hubbard.
The State Legislative Leaders Foundation states that its mission is to “educate and inspire our nation’s current and future legislative leaders to excellence, without regard for party, politics or ideology.” It also states that, “We do all this with a dedication to being impartial arbiters on important public policy issues, harboring no preconceived notions based on party identification, political ideology, or the often harsh glint of politics.”
Recently, Board Chairman, Republican P. Eric Turner, House Speaker Pro Tempore, Indiana, was found under the “harsh glint of politics,” when he was censured by his own House Caucus. The Indiana Republican House Caucus accused Turner of using his office to stop a bill that could have potentially lost millions of dollars for his family business. As a result, Turner, was removed from his position as House Speaker Pro Tempore.
According to a report by Fox 59, in Indiana, “In the final days of this year’s legislative session, Turner reportedly lobbied fellow Republicans during a closed-door caucus session to kill a bill that would have put a moratorium on new nursing homes. Turner’s family owns a nursing home business.”
Fox also reported that, “After a year full of controversy and an ethics investigation into his actions, Turner would resign his seat in the State’s General Assembly.”
Whereas, Turner was investigated by his own House Caucus, here in Alabama, our Ethics Director Jim Sumner publicly denied that even an Ethics Complaint had been filed against Hubbard, when it clearly had.
Also attending the ethics and leadership summit is Democrat, Sen. Viviane Figures.