General News

Republicans Acted With Racist Motives In Alabama Bingo Trial

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 2 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

Must Read 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H3 10/21/11

- Advertisement -



Cross Posted at Legal Schnauzer

Republican legislators acted with racist and political motives when they testified for the prosecution in the federal Alabama bingo case, a U.S. District judge says in a new ruling.

Sen. Scott Beason (R-Gardendale, photo above) and Rep. Benjamin Lewis (R-Dothan) drew harsh words from Judge Myron Thompson. The public likely will focus on Beason's role in the story because he has received national attention for sponsoring Alabama's strict and controversial immigration law. But Lewis, now a state district judge in Houston County, is a close ally to former Governor Bob Riley and was appointed to a judgeship by Riley. Democrats have pointed to that appointment as a possible quid pro quo in exchange for Lewis' no vote on bingo legislation.

Considering Lewis' close ties to Riley, and Riley's close ties to current House Speaker Mike Hubbard, Judge Thompson's ruling could be seen as a full-blown condemnation of the Alabama GOP. Reports al.com:

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson in an order today lambasted two key prosecution witnesses in the State House vote-buying case as being motivated by political ambition and racial prejudice.

Thompson said Republicans Sen. Scott Beason of Gardendale and former Rep. Benjamin Lewis of Dothan had ulterior motives when they assisted investigators in the case. Beason and Lewis were key prosecution witnesses in the case, in which VictoryLand owner Milton McGregor and others were charged with offering and taking bribes to try to get a gambling bill approved in the Alabama Legislature. The two Republicans said they approached FBI agents after they felt gambling interests made improper offers to try to secure their votes on the bill.

- Advertisement -

Ironically, Thompson ruled for the prosecution in the order--while thrashing the prosecution's two key witnesses. At the crux of his order, Thompson found that statements of alleged co-conspirators could be admitted at trial. (See the full order below.)

The public, however, is likely to remember Thompson's words about GOP legislators:

"The evidence introduced at trial contradicts the self-serving portrait of Beason and Lewis as untouchable opponents of corruption. In reality, Beason and Lewis had ulterior motives rooted in naked political ambition and pure racial bias," Thompson wrote.

"The court finds that Beason and Lewis lack credibility for two reasons. First, their motive for cooperating with F.B.I. investigators was not to clean up corruption but to increase Republican political fortunes by reducing African-American voter turnout. Second, they lack credibility because the record establishes their purposeful, racist intent," Thompson wrote.

- Advertisement -

Those words pretty much shoot holes through the GOP's contention that it is driven by a desire to bring "honest government" to Alabama. A federal judge obviously is not buying it. From al.com:

Beason wore a wire for the FBI, and the recordings picked up a conversation among Republicans talking about the effect a gambling referendum would have on voter turn-out during an election.

Next Page  1  |  2

 

I live in Birmingham, Alabama, and work in higher education. I became interested in justice-related issues after experiencing gross judicial corruption in Alabama state courts. This corruption has a strong political component. The corrupt judges are (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon


Go To Commenting

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles
- Advertisement -

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Boy Scouts and the Horrors of Their "Perversion Files"

Bush vs. Obama on Spending: It's No Contest

Why Is Karl Rove Planning to Visit the Backwoods of Alabama?

What's the Real Story Behind Karl Rove's Divorce?

Is "Morning Joe" Scarborough a Murderer?

Rove Might Be Trying To "Pull A Siegelman" With Julian Assange

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
1 people are discussing this page, with 1 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)
Thank you for this expose'.  I spent years wo... by Fay Paxton on Friday, Oct 21, 2011 at 2:34:22 PM