Jones: 1st step will be setting process for impeachment hearing

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 9, 2016

The House Judiciary Committee will meet next week to begin considering articles of impeachment against Gov. Robert Bentley. Rep. Mike Jones, R-Andalusia, will oversee the process as chair of the committee.

The meeting, an organizational session, will start taking legislators through a process that they may have to construct as they go along.

In a town hall meeting in Florala last week, Jones said there is not a precedent in Alabama to follow for the proceedings.

“Frankly, there’s not a lot of precedent anywhere. We’ve looked primarily at the state of Illinois and the U.S. Congress as to how we draft our rules and procedures.

Jones said he has been reading impeachment documents back to 1784. Procedures adopted when the committee meets for

Rep. Ed Henry, R-Hartselle, and 22 other House members in April signed articles of impeachment accusing Bentley of “willful neglect of duty” and “corruption in office.” The articles referred to complaints with the Alabama Ethics Commission over allegations about Bentley’s relationship with a former political adviser, Rebekah Caldwell Mason.

Bentley has acknowledged making inappropriate remarks to Mason, but both deny having a physical affair.