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The sooner the better

Decaturish updates

The sooner the better


Editor’s note: I live in Georgia, but I’m from Alabama. I married a beautiful Alabama gal, and graduated from the University of Alabama in 2005. I have roots there and care about its future.

Gov. Robert Bentley wants Rep. Jo Bonner to start packing the suitcases.

Bentley asked Rep. Bonner if he would mind moving up his Aug. 15 resignation date by two weeks, meaning he’d be leaving office around Aug. 1, according to my non-pagan calendar.

Aug. 1, huh? Why, isn’t that really close to the resignation dates of Rep. Jay Love (Aug. 1) and Secretary of State Beth Chapman (July 31)?

Rep. Bonner is resigning to take a job at the University of Alabama System, where his sister Judy works as president of the University of Alabama. He will become a lobbyist making $350,000 a year. Sec. Chapman will be a “political consultant” (how is that different from a lobbyist?) for ALFA. Rep. Love has accepted some as-yet-unknown opportunity in the private sector.

Gov. Bentley told Al.com that he wants to get the special election done in 2013. Since Gov. Bentley has the authority to ask Rep. Bonner to resign early, could he maybe request that he stay in Congress to avoid the burden and expense of a special election?

I see no one in Alabama media has made mention of how all three of the resignations now completely synch up. So here’s the thing. I know we journalists, as a profession, don’t presume we know anything. But we do have hunches and intuition. Perhaps in the interest of the obvious, could one of you please just ask these officials point blank if there’s any connection between the three similarly-timed resignations? And then could you publish the answers?

You might not be aware, but people are interested in this story. Since I published my article last week, my email inbox has been filling up with kudos and inquiries from people who are following what’s going on in Alabama politics. People care and the media’s silence hasn’t gone unnoticed.

There’s really no harm in asking questions and then letting us know you’ve asked them. That’s a reasonable thing when you have this many high profile politicians stepping down at once.

Why aren’t you doing it and what godawful thing has to happen before the question becomes unavoidable? Are we talking about another couple of resignations here, or are we talking about finding skeletons in the backyard?

What, exactly, are you waiting for?

Can’t wait too much longer. Aug. 1 will be here soon. Tick, tock. Tick, tock.