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A brief look at candidate Barry Moore

Congressman Barry Moore

Former state Representative Barry Moore will face Dothan businessman Jeff Coleman in a Republican primary runoff for Alabama’s Second Congressional District on July 14.

Moore entered politics in 2010, at the urging of then-Chair of the Republican Party Mike Hubbard.

(Hubbard is a convicted felon who is sentenced to four years in state prison for using his office for personal gain).

In his book “Storming the State House,” Hubbard said of Moore’s recruitment, “I delivered my best sales pitch.”

With the help of over $150,000 contributed by Hubbard-controlled PACs, Moore defeated Democrat incumbent, Terry Spicer, in 2010.

In his book, Hubbard also wrote, “I told the Moore’s that this would be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the two of them to do the State a tremendous service—first of all by defeating a double-dipping Democrat like Spicer and secondly by being a part of a historic Republican majority that would fundamentally change the way Montgomery operates.”

But Hubbard didn’t fundamentally change the pay-to-play scheme that has fed both Democrats and Republicans for years. He enhanced the scheme to reward himself and his cronies.

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Just two months after being elected, Moore received a contract with the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) for $27,500. The contract was executed in the name of Hopper-Moore, Inc., doing business as Barry Services. Hooper-Moore is registered as a “minority-owned business” because Moore’s wife, Heather, is purportedly part-Native American.

On December 15, 2011, two additional payments were made to Hopper-Moore from ADEM, one for $8,950, and the other $16,900. The three contracts in FY 2011 and FY 2012 were for “solid waste.”

In the Fiscal year 2013, Moore’s company received another contract with ADEM, which was $11,262 for “sanitation services.” Added up the four payments made to Hopper-Moore since January of 2011, and the total came to $64,612.

Before Moore was elected State Representative in District 91, neither he nor his wife had ever done business with the State.

Moore was always one of Hubbard’s faithful lieutenants, and while he never scored plum committee assignments, Hubbard leaned on Moore as someone he could count on politically.

Even today, a picture of the pair hangs in a prominent position at Moore’s home.

One of Hubbard’s economic development plans in 2012 was to bring 100 new jobs to Moore’s district in an expansion deal with Enterprise Electronics Corporation.

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A deed from Coffee County signed on August 15, 2012, shows that Moore and his wife, Heather, sold their suburban home to Enterprise Electronics Corporation for $650,000.

The real estate estimate for the five bedroom, 4.5 bath home was listed at $424,898. Neither Moore nor Enterprise Electronics Corporation answered why the company paid $200,000 over market value.

Also, in 2012, along with other House members, Moore sought to insert language into State law that would benefit private companies who provided solid waste management within certain counties and/or municipalities, including a company owned by Moore.

HB274 would have “prohibit a county, municipality, or solid waste authority from providing commercial front-end loader, roll-off, or commercial recycling collection services within the county or the municipality if there are two or more private solid waste providers offering those services in the county.”

Moore, along with fellow Republican legislators, proposed this bill, even though Moore owned a solid waste management company (Barry Moore Industries) that would have stood to gain personally from this bill’s passage.

Moore was arrested in April of 2014, on felony perjury and lying to authorities charges. He was accused of providing false statements to a grand jury during a grand jury probe that eventually led to Hubbard’s indictment.

While Moore would be acquitted of the charges, it was Hubbard who facilitated Moore’s legal defense.

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On his weekly FPCA filing for May 9, 2014, Moore listed an expenditure of $25,000 to Baxley, Dillard, McKnight & James, the law firm that would represent him at trial.

Hubbard’s Storm PAC gave Moore $10,000 on the day that Moore was served his indictments from the AG’s office and $15,000 just days after his arrest. Moore posted $10,000 in cash for his bail on April 24.

Moore also received significant donations from Hubbard’s closest allies, including Alabama 2014 PAC, managed by former Gov. Bob Riley.

According to that year’s April filings with the Secretary of State, Riley’s PAC gave Moore $25,000. Donations made to Moore by Hubbard and Riley were the largest donations either PAC gave any single candidate.

Moore rewarded Hubbard’s cash contributions by standing with him on a stage in Auburn the day Hubbard was indicted on 23 felony counts of public corruption.

He was also among the lawmakers who signed a letter to then-US Attorney General Loretta Lynch, asking her to investigate State’s Attorney General Luther Strange. There were ten accusations against Strange of “misconduct…incompetence or willful neglect of office.”

The letter was one of many attempts to derail Hubbard’s prosecution, and like the others, it failed.

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The request for an investigation was answered by then-US Attorney for the Middle District of Alabama, George L. Beck Jr. Beck found irony in the call for a federal investigation into the actions taken by Attorney General Luther Strange, Deputy Attorney General Matt Hart, against Hubbard.

“First issue is whether or not the misconduct of the State prosecutor has caused the illegal the indictment of Speaker Hubbard,” Beck said at a widely attended press conference. “It is somewhat ironic that a largely white, largely Republican, largely conservative group of legislators, have reached out to the Obama Administration to bail out the leader of legal entanglements he finds himself in,” Beck remarked.

Moore was a Hubbard loyalist who benefited financially from his time in public office. Now, he wants the voters of District Two to reward him with their vote.

It was Hubbard who gave Moore his start in politics, and it was Hubbard who enabled and protected him.

Hubbard awaits prison, while Moore seeks a win in the July 14 Republican primary.

Bill Britt is editor-in-chief at the Alabama Political Reporter and host of The Voice of Alabama Politics. You can email him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter.

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