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Weekly Recap: Who were the week’s winners and losers?

Who came out on top in Alabama politics this week?

Attorney General Troy King faces many fronts at the end of this week.

First, his much-talked about announcement Wednesday about his authority over the governor’s anti-gambling task force was quickly dismissed by task force commander John Tyson.

Now, Legislative Black Caucus chairman Rep. John Rogers complains King is “backing down.” Rogers says he will turn to the U.S. Department of Justice to deal with what he calls “intimidation” of electronic bingo operations by the task force. An attorney for the city of Midfield says he won’t wait for King. He’s considering a lawsuit challenging the task force authority.

While that struggle continues, King’s Republican rival for AG, Luther Strange, sticks to mocking humor, comparing King to a groundhog.

The moderator of Tuesday’s gubernatorial forum at Samford University says Republicans Bradley Byrne, Bill Johnson and Democrat Artur Davis may have best explained their vision to a crowded auditorium of faculty, students, politicos and business leaders. Watch Birmingham Business Journal editor Craig Ey’s comments here (go to 8:16 in the video).

The Davis campaign has been aggressive this week in its questioning of Democratic rival Ron Sparks and that $500,000 personal loan to his campaign. It’s a case of “where did the money come from?” Davis asks in this campaign release.

The Birmingham News, Mobile Press Register, Mooncat at Left in Alabama and Danny at Political Parlor also want to know.

Republican Roy Moore skipped Tuesday’s gubernatorial forum to campaign in southeast Alabama. Following an interview Thursday on FOX6 News Good Day Alabama, Moore answered more questions about the race. He expresses frustration that more privately funded polls aren’t made public. Moore contends they would clearly show him leading the Republican field. He believes a recent PSA poll was slanted for Byrne. On the topic of Byrne, Moore had interesting comments about the “Bible flap” story that hounded the Mobile Republican in December and January. Moore noted Byrne’s first commercials of the campaign.

“I’m often accused for using my religion for politics,” Moore says, “so many are just saying it for politics.”

Finally, a statement from RNC chairman Michael Steele is showcased on the state GOP website concerning a legislative pickup in HD40.

Who had a good week? And who…. not so much? Let me know.

Read more of Rick Journey’s blogs here.

One Response to “Weekly Recap: Who were the week’s winners and losers?”

  1. Sorry, didn’t mean to post this on the other article!!!

    In a story published today from GadsdenMetro.com, Etowah County’s Legislative Delegation is promising the Sweet Home Alabama bill, as it is written now, won’t see the light of day.

    Two members of the local delegation, Jack Page (D) and Craig Ford (D), both friends with Milton McGregor, say the exclusion of Etowah and Walker County will cause problems for the bill, even if it DOES come out of the Senate. All three Representatives from Etowah County have seats on the House Rules Committee (a VERY unique situation). Along with Ken Guin’s (D) vote on the powerful Rules Committee, the group has a block of four out of fifteen, along with the weight of Guin’s big stick to push some others away from the bill.

    Senator Larry Means (D) of Etowah County, has already publicly promised to offer amendments to the Sweet Home Alabama bill that would provide protection for the Etowah County Bingo Development, if it makes it to the Senate Floor.

    However, a 3/5th vote will be necessary to even get the bill onto the Senate Floor in front of any unpassed budget legislation. That BIR, says Page and Ford, will be HIGHLY unlikely to pass. Then, the amendment will require a 2/3rds majority vote.

    Page told attendees at an informational meeting today at the Gadsden Chamber meeting room that he expects the Senate to gavel in around 2 pm on Tuesday, and a filibuster will begin until the bingo bill is removed from the table.

    So… and its unusual that one could say this… I think “the house” is the loser this week… but, for how long, I couldn’t say.

    This is what, the third, fourth version of McGregor’s bingo bill? And it STILL won’t pass muster in the legislature. King has drawn the lines even deeper in the sand between the Governor and gambling proponents. Tyson apparently is continuing his efforts to push electronic bingo right on past the state lines and slamming the doors shut on their way out.

    Who knows how long the house will lose… but this week… I’d say Gilley, McGregor, et al are the losers.