GOP District 7 Senate candidates receive money from PACS, casino owners, and employer

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Days out from the Alabama Primary Election, Republican candidates running for the District 7 seat are aggressively campaigning.

Money has poured into the Republican race for Alabama's District 7 seat, but who is giving money to the two candidates is very different.

Mary Scott Hunter has received more than $150,000 from her boss Harold Brewer at Intuitive Research and Technology. That's more than a fourth of the amount she's raised for the District 7 Senate seat.

WHNT'S Chelsea Brentzel: "If you're elected... do you owe anything to him because he helped with your campaign?"

Mary Scott Hunter, District 7 Senate Candidate: "No. People that donate to your campaign, individuals. Whether they are individuals or institutional donors or organizational donors. They donate to you because they have an organizational interest that your mindset already is for."

Hunter works as Brewer's advisor for compliance, ethics, and risks.

"Nobody should ever ask you for an individual backscratch, and individual favor," said Hunter. "That is not, that is absolutely not acceptable."

We also asked Hunter about the $10,000 that the Poarch Creek Indians, who run Alabama's casinos, gave her.

"The Poarch Creek Indians are investing here in Madison County pretty heavily in the gateway project. They are building the hotel downtown. They took interest in my campaign because of the business interest they have in Madison County."

Republican Sam Givhan is also running for the Senate seat. A good chunk of his money is from PACs, like FARMPAC, Forest PAC, and the Alabama Realtors PAC. Campaign finance records indicate more than 40 percent of what Givhan has raised is from political action committees.

"It's coming from business interests. It's coming from interests that people you deal with all the time. Your realtors, your home builders, those are people that I've worked with for years," says Givhan.

Givhan says the thousands of dollars funneled into his campaign by various PACs will have no impact on his decisions if elected.

We also asked Givhan about a flier sent out by the Alabama Education Association that asks voters to support him. Givhan's answer included a dig at his opponent, Mary Scott Hunter, who has served on the Alabama State Board of Education for several years.

WHNT's Chelsea Brentzel: "Do you believe that should be a reported campaign expenditure on your part?

Sam Givhan, District 7 Senate Candidate: "I didn't send the flier out. That's a decision they made. So apparently eight years on the school board has not impressed the education community. That's something they chose to do."

We'll soon learn what voters think about the candidates and the money flowing into their campaigns.

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