dglobalnews.com Alabama governor asks court to halt impeachment process
Published: Mon, April 10, 2017
Global Media | By Cecelia Webb

Alabama governor asks court to halt impeachment process

The Alabama Supreme Court Saturday lifted a temporary restraining order blocking impeachment hearings against Gov. Robert Bentley. Lawyers for the governor rushed to court and appeared before two judges to stop the impeachment proceedings, which were set to begin Monday.

"I want to thank the members of the Alabama Supreme Court for quickly acting on our appeal and recognizing, what a circuit court judge didn't understand, that there are three branches of government and the Alabama Legislature is free to conduct its business as prescribed in the state constitution", the statement said.

State lawmakers on Friday night filed a notice of emergency appeal to the Alabama Supreme Court - capping a long day of escalating hostilities between the Republican governor and the Republican-controlled legislature.

"... In the spring 2014, Governor Bentley mistakenly sent to Ms. Bentley a text message that stated, "I love you Rebekah" and was accompanied by a red-rose emoji", the report states.

Bentley has denied having a physical affair with Mason, who is married. Bentley's legal adviser David Byrne has said the rapidly moving process hasn't given the governor time to respond.

Bentley has no shortage of issues requiring attorneys.

The special counsel to the Judiciary Committee, Sharman, has said the committee hadn't violated any due process rights.

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Bentley, a former Baptist deacon, used the language of his religion during his Friday public appearance, acknowledging "personal struggles" and asking for prayer.

Special Counsel Jack Sharman released the 131-page report Friday as Bentley's lawyers were in court to try to block its release.

Amid growing calls for his removal, the governor rejected the accusation that he misused state resources, vowing to remain in office.

The Alabama House Judiciary Committee sought the investigation ahead of considering impeachment articles against the governor for willful neglect of duty and corruption in office. But Montgomery County Circuit Judge Roman Shaul said his inclination "at this point would not be to restrain this report".

Bentley has maintained he has done nothing illegal or of the level worthy of impeachment. He criticized unnamed people he said were delighting in exposing the embarrassing details of his personal life. Bentley vowed again he won't resign even as his political troubles mounted an. The Alabama Ethics Commission on Wednesday found probable cause that Bentley broke ethics and campaign law and referred the matter for possible prosecution.

The 74-year-old governor hastily called a news conference in which he told constituents he knew he had let them down.

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