By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter
MONTGOMERY—The Republican primary to elect a replacement for disgraced lawmaker and convicted felon Rep. Mike Hubbard will be held on Tuesday.
Jay Conner, Joe Lovvorn, Sandy Toomer and Brett Smith are all in the running to represent District 79, but parts of the former Hubbard machine are pushing Lovvorn toward the winner’s circle.
Not only is Lovvorn receiving four times more money than his closest competitor, his campaign is receiving guidance from Montgomery-based Greystone Consulting.
Greystone also represented the Alabama 2014 PAC, led by former Gov. Bob Riley and Hubbard.
Lovvorn’s campaign disclosures show Greystone Consulting was paid around $50,000 for its services.
Led by former AEA commutation director Lance Hyche, the consulting group lists the lobbying firm owned by Dax Swatek, Tim Howe and John Ross, as well as charter school advocacy group, Students First, among it clients.
Swatek, Howe and Ross, along with BCA’s Billy Canary are members of Hubbard’s kitchen cabinet. These men also testified at his felony conviction trial about their involvement or knowledge in Hubbard’s schemes. Far from being outcasts like Hubbard, the foursome stroll the halls of the State House as if they were never the felon’s closest confidants.
Adding Greystone Consulting’s relationship to those close to Hubbard, and given that most of Lovvorn’s money is coming from the Montgomery-based associations and the well-heeled of Auburn, furthers speculation that Lovvorn is a Hubbard redux.