Mike Hubbard

Victor Gaston
Albert Cesare / Montgomery Advertiser

Acting Alabama House Speaker Victor Gaston says he isn’t interested in making that title any more permanent.

The Mobile Republican representative announced yesterday that he will not be a candidate for speaker. Gaston says he was grateful to the colleagues and friends who encouraged him to seek the post. He says he will dedicate his remaining time as acting speaker to making sure all the various House functions run smoothly.

Members of the Alabama Legislature will elect a new House speaker in February, possibly sooner if Governor Bentley calls a special session.  

Contenders for the job are beginning to emerge after former House Speaker Mike Hubbard was removed from office after being convicted on twelve ethics charges.

Former House Speaker Mike Hubbard's name has been removed from the Alabama Legislature's website and his legislative district is listed as vacant in the wake of his conviction on ethics charges.

A jury convicted Hubbard Friday evening on 12 felony ethics charges. The felony convictions caused Hubbard's automatic and immediate removal from office.

House Speaker Pro Tem Victor Gaston is fulfilling the speaker's duties.

What's next for Mike Hubbard?

Jun 12, 2016
MacKenzie Bates/APR

The former Alabama House Speaker was convicted on more than half of the 23 felony ethics charges against him on Friday in a Lee County courtroom.  He has no job, no title, and will be sentenced next month.  APR’s MacKenzie Bates was there during the tense hours between final arguments and the verdict…

Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard's fate will soon be in the hands of a jury.

Prosecutors and defense lawyers have begun closing arguments this afternoon in Hubbard's ethics trial. They are expected to finish Friday morning.

The arguments will cap nearly three weeks of trial that included testimony from the current and past governor. Hubbard testified in his own defense, rebutting assertions that the contracts and investments his companies stemmed from his political sway.

A state judge is refusing to dismiss ethics charges against Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard.

Lee County Judge Jacob Walker says he will let the charges go to the jury, rejecting a defense request for a summary judgment of acquittal after prosecutors rested their case.

Defense lawyer Bill Baxley says he plans to call on former Gov. Bob Riley, who testified earlier as a prosecution witness.

The president of an education curriculum company says that he paid Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard $7,500 a month to open doors with legislative leaders across the country — but not in Alabama.

Edgenuity President Michael Humphrey testified that he thought Hubbard could get him meetings with legislative leaders in other states, given his background as a legislator and someone familiar with college sports.

The unofficial start of the summer travel season means more cars on the road today.

The American Automobile Association expected thirty eight million motorists to drive at least fifty miles from home over Memorial Day. Today means a lot of those return trips, making for crowded conditions on Alabama’s roads and highways.

Triple-A spokesman Clay Ingram says the end of a vacation can lead to a list of concerns as people get behind the wheel to come home…

First week of Hubbard trial concludes

May 29, 2016

The first week of testimony in the ethics trial of Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard concluded with a peek at the business dealings of the influential Republican.

Hubbard's former chief of staff testified Wednesday that Hubbard didn't tell him about two consulting contracts.

Prosecutors also presented evidence about Alabama Republican Party work that was subcontracted back to Hubbard's media companies when he was party chairman.

State Medicaid officials say they opposed Medicaid language temporarily inserted in the 2013 budget that could have benefited a client of House Speaker Mike Hubbard.

Medicaid Commissioner Stephanie Azar testified today that Medicaid officials were caught off guard by language added in the House.  It would have set requirements for any pharmacy benefit manager the state might hire.

Hubbard trial continues, Alabama Voting App rolls out

May 25, 2016

The former chief of staff for the Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard has testified in the ethics trial of his former boss.

Josh Blades testified today that he was upset and concerned about "legal implications" after learning that language added to a 2013 budget bill could have benefited one of Hubbard's clients.

Blades said he learned later that a group that would get the work was paying Hubbard through a consulting contract. The language was stripped in conference committee.

Lawyers have picked a jury for House Speaker Mike Hubbard's ethics trial scheduled to start next week. A-P-R’s Stan Ingold has more…

The panel of 12 jurors and four alternates is made up of five black men, four white men, four black women and three white women.

The Montgomery Advertiser and al.com reports that Lee County Judge Jacob Walker instructed the panel not to discuss the high-profile case.

Jury selection is ongoing in the trial of Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard.

About 100 of the 140 Lee County residents were on hand as the selection process began in Opelika. 

Republican Speaker Mike Hubbard faces 23 felony ethics charges of using his political position for personal gain back in October 2014. Hubbard has maintained his innocence throughout the indictments. 

Hubbard faces removal from office if he’s convicted.

Embattled Gov. Robert Bentley is maintaining he has done nothing illegal or unethical, a day after Alabama lawmakers revived an impeachment effort against him.

Bentley initially tried to sidestep impeachment questions. He says the past year has been "difficult" and implored people to trust him.

Bentley last month acknowledged making inappropriate remarks to a female political adviser.

A judge is delaying the ethics trial of Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard for two weeks until mid-April.

Lee County Circuit Judge Jacob Walker rules that he will push back the trial until April 11 after the defense appeals some of his pre-trial decisions to the Alabama Supreme Court.

Hubbard was scheduled to go to trial March 28 on felony charges of using his office for personal financial gain.

A judge has rescheduled a hearing on indicted House Speaker Mike Hubbard's request to dismiss ethics charges against him.  Circuit Judge Jacob Walker delayed the hearing until Feb. 16 because of a scheduling conflict.

Hubbard is alleging prosecutorial misconduct after a political consultant says he communicated often with the lead prosecutor and used the information to try to damage Hubbard politically.

Hubbard removes GOP foes from top committee assignments

Jan 30, 2016

Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard is removing two vocal Republican critics from prominent committee assignments as part of a larger reshuffling.

Rep. Phil Williams of Huntsville was removed as chairman of the technology and research committee. Rep. Ed Henry of Hartselle lost a seat on the education budget committee to become vice-chairman of the campaign and ethics committee.

Williams is challenging Hubbard for speaker, and both representatives have questioned if Hubbard should remain while awaiting trial on ethics charges.

University Blvd
Mackenzie Bates / APR

Alabama fans in Tuscaloosa are celebrating the Crimson Tide’s 45-40 win over Clemson in the College Football Playoff National Championship. APR’s MacKenzie Bates takes us to campus where the partying held strong long after the final whistle.

Alabama fans piled out on to University Boulevard right outside of the Tuscaloosa campus to cheer as the Crimson Tide won the program’s 16th National Championship.

Tight end O.J. Howard had five catches for 208 yards and two touchdowns, including the go-ahead score with 9:48 left in the game

A judge has set a hearing on House Speaker Mike Hubbard's claims of prosecutorial misconduct and argument that the ethics law is unconstitutional.

Lee County Circuit Judge Jacob Walker says the hearing is on October 26.  Walker says for Hubbard to prevail, he must prove misconduct that substantially impacted a grand jury's decision to indict Hubbard.

Hubbard faces 23 ethics charges accusing him of using his public offices to benefit his businesses.

Republican Representative Phil Williams of Huntsville says he is challenging Mike Hubbard to be speaker of the House, saying he, and others, believe the House needs fresh leadership.

A letter to house members come as several Republican legislators called for Hubbard to step down as he heads to trial on ethics charges.

Williams shares a sentiment that the House can't operate effectively with current leadership.

Indicted House Speaker Mike Hubbard is back in court for another hearing ahead of his fall trial on felony ethics charges.

Lee County Circuit Judge Jacob Walker heard arguments and testimony today on various motions in the case.

Hubbard's defense team wants to dismiss the case. They argue there was prosecutorial misconduct. They also believe Attorney General Luther Strange did not have the authority to select an acting attorney general when he stepped aside from the case.

wikipedia.org

Alabama’s Unmanned Aerial System Task Force is submitting a report to Governor Bentley today. That report will lay the groundwork for regulating unmanned aerial drones throughout the state.

Alabama Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries John McMillan heads that task force. He said the privacy of Alabama’s citizens was a great concern when drafting the report, but compared UAVs to another hot-button privacy topic.

Prosecutors in the perjury trial of Republican Rep. Barry Moore played tape recordings of Moore and his primary opponent discussing if state funds would be in jeopardy if he ran against Moore.

On one tape Tuesday, former primary candidate Josh Pipkin asked Moore if the Enterprise area would lose state money for a jobs projects if he stayed in the race.

legislature.state.al.us

The first trial resulting from a special grand jury investigation in Lee County is set to begin.

Republican Rep. Barry Moore of Enterprise goes on trial Monday in Opelika on charges of perjury and making false statements to law enforcement. Prosecutors have accused Moore of lying to the grand jury during its investigation of possible government corruption.

Defense attorney Bill Baxley describes the evidence as the weakest he's seen.

Attorneys expect to conclude the trial within one week.

blog.al.com

A newly-created special commission is expected to help small business startups throughout the state and assist existing businesses in their expansion efforts.

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley is expected to announce the creation of the Alabama Small Business Commission Monday morning at the state Capitol building along with House Speaker Mike Hubbard, Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh and National Federation of Independent Business State Director Rosemary Elebash.

legislature.state.al.us

A Lee County Circuit Court judge has moved the trial for an Alabama lawmaker facing perjury charges to October.

The Opelika-Auburn News reported Wednesday that Judge Jacob A. Walker rescheduled Republican Rep. Barry Moore's trial for the week of Oct. 27. The case was initially scheduled to begin next week. The judge moved the trial based on a request from Moore's defense attorney.

Poarch Band of Creek Indians

The Poarch Band of Creek Indians gave $500,000 to a Republican group that contributed to 2010 legislative races, but state Republicans say they didn't direct the donation.

Republican Senate leader Del Marsh says he met with the tribe in 2009 but didn't ask for the donation.

Marsh says he was hoping to prevent the tribe from bankrolling Democrats. He told members of the tribal council that the GOP majority would not oppose legal gambling operations.

The tribe gave $550,000 to the Virginia-based Republican State Leadership Committee.

Alabama campaign finance records show that Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard has used campaign funds to pay more than $230,000 in legal fees since December.

Records show that Hubbard has paid a total of $176,475 to the Birmingham law firm of White, Arnold and Dowd, and $55,000 to the Pell City law firm of Trussell, Funderburg, Rea and Bell.

The payments began in December, and Hubbard's campaign reported paying $10,000 to the Pell City firm in August.

State law allows the use of campaign funds for legal expenses under certain circumstances.

Alabama House of Representatives

House Speaker Mike Hubbard is praising the U.S. Supreme Court decision that says prayers at the opening of town council meetings don't violate the Constitution.

Hubbard filed a friend of the court brief in the case that was decided by the Supreme Court 5-4 on Monday. Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote that the prayers used by the town council in Greece, New York, are ceremonial and in keeping with the nation's traditions.

Alabama House of Representatives

Republican House Speaker Mike Hubbard of Auburn has appointed representatives to fill committee leadership vacancies prior to the Feb. 5 start of the 2013 regular session.

Republican Rep. Lynn Greer of Rogersville will replace Rep. Mac McCutcheon of Capshaw as chairman of the Transportation, Utilities and Infrastructure Committee. McCutcheon recently became chairman of the House Rules Committee, replacing former Rep. Blaine Galliher of Rainbow City. Galliher resigned his House seat to take a position on the governor's staff.

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