Alabama GOP calls for Speaker Mike Hubbard to suspend leadership position

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Three weeks before the 2016 Legislative Session convenes, the Alabama Republican Party passed a resolution Sunday night calling for Alabama Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard to step down.

The resolution, passed the Alabama Republican Party Steering Committee, asks Hubbard to “suspend his role as Speaker until his trial is complete, and the indictments against him are resolved.”

In a statement, Alabama Republican Party Chairwoman Terry Lathan said the party “strongly believes the needs of the state must be the first priority of elected officials.”

“The GOP-controlled legislature needs full time focused attention on the people’s business,” Lathan continued. “The distractions of Representative Hubbard’s legal situation will make it extremely difficult for him to meet the demands of his role as Alabama Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Meanwhile, the party-passed resolution touches on a particularly sensitive subject during an election year — public perception.

“The trial, itself, is likely to become a distraction from the regular business of the legislature and, later become a subject of public debate in the primary and general elections of 2016,” reads the resolution.

Hubbard was indicted by a Lee County grand jury in October 2014 with 23 felony charges stemming from allegations he misused his power in the Legislature and the Alabama Republican Party to enrich himself and secure contracts for allies.

Read the complete statement from Lathan below:

The Alabama Republican Party strongly believes the needs of our state must be the first priority of our elected officials. The GOP controlled legislature needs full time focused attention on the people’s business. The distractions of Representative Hubbard’s legal situation will make it extremely difficult for him to meet the demands of his role as Alabama Speaker of the House of Representatives.

At this time, we recognize that Representative Hubbard remains innocent on the charges brought against him. We wish only the best for him and his family.

We reached out to Representative Hubbard numerous times to meet with a small group of GOP leaders to discuss our concerns, to no avail.

As a servant of the people, we urge Representative Hubbard to put the larger interest of Alabama first.

Read the complete resolution below:

Resolution
Passed by the Alabama Republican Party Executive Committee
January 10, 2016

WHEREAS, Representative Mike Hubbard serves the State of Alabama as Speaker of the Alabama House of Representatives; and

WHEREAS, since 2013, Speaker Hubbard has had to endure an investigation in regard to various allegations about his private financial affairs and his service as Speaker; and

WHEREAS, in 2014 Speaker Hubbard was indicted for 23 felony counts and allegedly violating the Alabama Ethics Laws which regulates the performance of public officials, and the indictment includes allegations about his conduct before he was Speaker while he served as Chairman of the Alabama Republican Party from 2007 to 2011, and his trial is set for March of 2016; and,

WHEREAS, there has been ongoing public discussion of the Hubbard indictment since it was issued, and the trial is currently scheduled to take place during the regular session of the Alabama Legislature in 2016; and,

WHEREAS, the trial, itself, is likely to become a distraction from the regular business of the legislature and, later become a subject of public debate in the primary and general elections of 2016; and,

WHEREAS, the Alabama Republican Party is an association of private citizens organized to elect candidates to public office in Alabama to advance the policies of securing a free citizenry and fiscal responsibility in accordance with law, including the U.S. Constitution and the State Constitution; and

WHEREAS, the Alabama Republican Party seeks to protect its right to self-governance against over-reaching application of the Ethics Law, especially if meant to be applied to its private activities and its leadership, but will not evaluate the specifics of the charges against Hubbard; and

WHEREAS, the Alabama Republican Party does not want the distractions of the Hubbard trial to take away from the regular business of the legislature or its ability to achieve the policy objectives of the Republican Party in the primary and general elections of 2016;

BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we, the members of the Alabama Republican Party Steering Committee, respectfully request Mike Hubbard to suspend his role as Speaker until his trial is complete, and the indictments against him are resolved.

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