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Moore calls on Washington Post, New York Times to release their full report on Project Birmingham

Brandon Moseley

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Former Chief Justice Roy Moore called on the Washington Post and New York Times to release their copy of the report on Project Birmingham, the darks ops political effort used by Democratic operatives in the 2017 special election.

The Judge Roy Moore Legal Defense Fund today called on the Washington Post, and the New York Times to release their copies of the Project Birmingham “After-Action Report” widely blamed for promulgating what the media has called a “Russian-style” disinformation campaign.

Moore and his Legal Defense Fund are also calling on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence to investigate how TDIP, New Knowledge, and former SSCI staffers allegedly collaborated on perpetrating the disinformation campaign during the 2017 special senate election.

“This is the height of hypocrisy as the Democrats now demand that the Mueller report be released, but desperately try to keep another report secret,” Moore added. “The Democrats and media can’t ask for the release one report and then hide behind another that details the fraud perpetrated on Alabama in 2017 and keep their credibility.”

“There are 12 pages in the report, but only six of those pages have been made public,” Moore reported. “The rest of that report should be made public. The same media actors who perpetrated the bogus Russia-collusion narrative on the American people for the last two years are helping to cover up how the very same type of campaign was used to interfere in the election of a U.S. Senator in Alabama.”

Moore alleged that, “The very same entities who created the now widely discredited Steele Dossier worked to peddle falsehoods here in Alabama. It’s time we shine a light on all this fraud, and get to the bottom of it so we can keep bad actors in both parties from doing this again.”

U.S. Senator Doug Jones, D-Alabama, who allegedly benefitted from these deceptive tactics, has publicly denounced the unscrupulous social media tactics; which included fake profiles on social media pretending to be Alabama Republicans who despised Roy Moore) and the use of Russia bots to create a Facebook and Twitter mob that promoted accusations against Moore, harassed Moore’s supporters, and either promoted a Republicans for Jones narrative or urged Republicans to write in a hopeless “anybody but Moore” campaign..

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“Democrats have called for an investigation into the election fraud with the FEC, but now that it’s clear Democrat elements within the U.S. Senate were likely involved with the fraud, and Alabama Democrats haven’t followed through with their tough talk,” Moore alleged. “Instead, Alabama Democrats are already talking about adding illegals and other non-voting populations to the ballot.”

“At a time when the media are calling for the full release of the Mueller Report — an idea I fully support — some of the same press outlets who were complicit with pushing false narratives in Alabama’s 2017 special election are sitting on information that would shed light onto how exactly dark money finds its way from Obama-affiliated non-profits to shell PACs working with Big Tech billionaires to buy elections,” Moore concluded.

While Republicans control the U.S. Senate and could hold hearings on the 2017 special election; key GOP Senators remain staunchly opposed to Moore as a candidate. Senator Cory Gardner, R-Colorado, headed the National Senate Republican Committee in 2017. Under his leadership, the NRSC squandered almost $50 million, that could perhaps have been better used to help vulnerable Republican candidates in the 2018 general elections in Arizona and Nevada, in the Alabama special Republican Primary.

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That money was spent on media buys attacking Congressman Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) and Moore; while pushing appointed Senator Luther Strange’s campaign. Many Alabamians believed that Strange had gotten his appointment by agreeing not to indict then Governor Robert Bentley and no amount of money could ever gain Strange that trust back. Even President Donald J. Trump coming to Alabama to campaign for Strange did nothing to resurrect Strange’s flagging campaign, Strange kept saying over and over again at their one debate “Donald Trump is my friend,” “He chose me.”  It did not help.

Rather than embrace Moore as the GOP nominee, Gardner refused to support Moore.

“Roy Moore will never have the support of the senatorial committee,” Gardner said. “We will never endorse him. We won’t support him. I won’t let that happen. Nothing will change. I stand by my previous statement.”

Gardner cited allegations, published first in the Washington Post, that Moore mistreated teenage girls in the 1970s. Gardner believed the allegations against Moore, whom he already despised; but did not believe allegations last year against Brett Kavanaugh, whom he voted to confirm. Moore, like Kavanaugh, denies ever abusing any women.

Moore has not ruled out running for Senate again. Rather than staying out of Alabama Republican Party business, the NRSC has vowed to fight Moore in the Alabama Primary again. Providing more evidence that the 2017 special election was somehow tainted against Moore/

Jones, denies that he won his seat because of Operation Birmingham, and has challenged Moore to a rematch in 2020.

Brandon Moseley is a senior reporter with eight and a half years at Alabama Political Reporter. You can email him at [email protected] or follow him on Facebook. Brandon is a native of Moody, Alabama, a graduate of Auburn University, and a seventh generation Alabamian.

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Corruption

Arrest warrant issued for Rep. Will Dismukes for felony theft

Dismukes is charged with first-degree theft of property in connection with a theft that occurred at his place of employment between the years 2016 to 2018.

Eddie Burkhalter

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Alabama State Rep. Will Dismukes, R-Prattville, has been accused of theft of property, a Class B felony. (WSFA)

An arrest warrant has been issued for Alabama State Rep. Will Dismukes, R-Prattville, for felony theft from a business where he worked, Montgomery County District Attorney Daryl Bailey said Thursday.

Dismukes is charged with first-degree theft of property in connection with a theft that occurred at his place of employment between the years 2016 to 2018, Bailey said during a press conference.

Bailey said the charge is a Class B felony and levied when a person steals in excess of $2,500 and that “I will tell you that the alleged amount is a lot more than that.” 

“The warrant has just been signed, his attorney has been notified and we are giving him until late this afternoon to turn himself in,” Bailey said.

Bailey said the employer contacted the district attorney’s office with a complaint about the theft on May 20, and after reviewing bank records and interviewing witnesses, the decision was made to charge Dismukes with the theft. 

WSFA reported Thursday that the theft occurred at Dismukes’ former employer, Weiss Commercial Flooring Inc. in East Montgomery. Bailey did not provide any more specifics on the charge but said the employer signed the arrest warrant after countless hours of investigation on the part of the DA’s office.

While the charge stems from a complaint filed months ago, Dismukes been in the headlines recently and faced a torrent of calls for his resignation in recent weeks after posting to Facebook an image of himself attending a birthday celebration for the first grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, Nathan Bedford Forrest.

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The event was hosted by an individual with close ties to the League of the South, a hate group, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.

In response, Dismukes stepped down from his post as a pastor at an Autauga County Baptist church but defiantly refused to step down from the Legislature.

If convicted of the felony, Dismukes would be immediately removed from his seat in the Alabama House, to which he was elected in 2018.

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In June, the Alabama Democratic Party called for his resignation over previous social media posts glorifying the Confederacy.

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Economy

New unemployment claims continue to drop

Micah Danney

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(STOCK PHOTO)

There were 11,692 unemployment claims filed in Alabama last week, down from 17,439 the previous week, according to the Alabama Department of Labor.

Seventy-six percent of the claims from July 26 to Aug. 1 were related to COVID-19, according to the Alabama Department of Labor. That compares to 89 percent the week before.

New claims increased over the first half of July but declined in the second half.

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Health

Alabama nursing homes can’t use rapid COVID-19 test machines without federal guidance

In Alabama, there were 686 coronavirus deaths in long-term care facilities as of Wednesday, which was 42 percent of the state’s 1,639 COVID-19 deaths at that point.

Eddie Burkhalter

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(STOCK PHOTO)

Some Alabama nursing homes have received rapid, point-of-care COVID-19 test machines, but without guidance from the federal agency that sent them, the machines aren’t being used.

It’s been three weeks since the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in a nationwide conference call with nursing home administrators announced plans to disburse the machines, which can provide results in 15 minutes.

John Matson, director of communications for the Alabama Nursing Home Association, told the Alabama Political Reporter on Wednesday that CMS has said it will send the rapid testing machines to 78 Alabama nursing homes to start, and eventually will supply one to each nursing home in the state. He said some of those 78 facilities have received them while some are still waiting for delivery.

“The biggest thing we’re waiting on from CMS is guidance on when and how it wants us to use these machines,” Matson said.

Matson said that CMS officials on the July 16 conference call said that regulations and guidance on the testing machines weren’t yet ready, but that the agency wanted to go ahead and disburse the machines.

“They wanted to distribute machines and then let the guidance and the regulations catch up,” Matson said.

The Trump administration touted the rapid tests machines’ ability to bolster testing in nursing homes, which care for older, sick people who are at most risk of serious complications and death due to coronavirus.

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As of July 30, 43 states reported 62,925 COVID-19 deaths, which was 44 percent of all coronavirus deaths in those states, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

In Alabama, there were 686 coronavirus deaths in long-term care facilities as of Wednesday, which was 42 percent of the state’s 1,639 COVID-19 deaths at that point.

While nursing home administrators await those federal guidelines to be able to use the rapid test machines, it’s taking longer to get COVID-19 test results from many labs. Matson said some nursing homes are seeing wait times for results as long as a week, which public health experts say makes the results nearly worthless.

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“Not every nursing home is experiencing that, but we do know that some are experiencing a longer turnaround time,” Matson said.  “As we’ve said before, knowledge is key, and when we run those tests we need those tests results back in a timely manner so we know how to properly treat our patients and our employees.”

The Alabama Department of Public Health on July 31 said that as Alabama continues to see an increase in the number of new COVID-19 cases, it’s taking commercial labs and ADPH’s lab an average of seven days to get results.

ADPH in the release states that the lengthier turnaround time for test results is due to several factors, including supply chain problems with test reagents, more demand for coronavirus tests nationwide, “and in some cases, increased numbers of unnecessary tests.”

“I think it’s important to emphasize that that is essentially a worthless result,” said Dr. Jeanne Marrazzo, director of infectious disease at UAB, during a press briefing July 30. “At that point, all it tells you is that six days ago you were negative.”

And there are problems with the rapid testing machine’s accuracy. CMS has said the machines have an error rate of between 15 and 20 percent, and that a negative test result on the machines shouldn’t be used to rule out a possible case.

“Negative results should generally be treated as presumptive, do not rule out SARS-CoV-2 infection and should not be used as the sole basis for treatment or patient management decisions, including infection control decisions,” CMS said in a FAQ on the rapid test machines for nursing homes.

Matson said CMS told nursing homes that while a negative test result should be followed up with a subsequent lab test to be certain, a positive result on the rapid test machines very likely means the person has coronavirus.

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Elections

Alabama Forestry Association endorses Tuberville

Brandon Moseley

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Republican U.S. Senate candidate Tommy Tuberville.

The Alabama Forestry Association announced Wednesday that the group is endorsing Republican Senate nominee Tommy Tuberville in the upcoming general election.

“We are proud to endorse Tommy Tuberville in the United States Senate race,” said AFA Executive Vice President Chris Isaacson. “He is a conservative with an impressive list of accomplishments, and we know that he will continue that record in his role as U.S. Senator. Tommy knows that decisions made in Washington impact families and businesses and will be an effective voice for the people of Alabama.”

“I am honored to have the endorsement of the Alabama Forestry Association,” Tuberville said. “The AFA is an excellent organization that stands for pro-business policies. Protecting Alabama industry is a key to our state’s success.”

Tuberville recently won the Republican nomination after a primary season that was extended because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Tuberville is a native of Arkansas and a graduate of Southern Arkansas University. He held a number of assistant coaching positions, including defensive coordinator at Texas A&M and the University of Miami where he won a national championship.

Tuberville has been a head coach at Mississippi, Auburn, Texas Tech and Cincinnati. In his nine years at Auburn University, the team appeared in eight consecutive bowl games. His 2004 team won the SEC Championship and the Sugar Bowl.

Tuberville coached that team to a perfect 13 to 0 season.

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Tuberville has been married to his wife Suzanne since 1991. They have two sons and live in Auburn.

Tuberville is challenging incumbent Democratic Sen. Doug Jones in the Nov. 3 general election.

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