Alabama’s House Judiciary Committee, which is handling impeachment proceedings against Governor Robert Bentley, is not currently planning to meet this week to address concerns raised by the governor’s lawyer. He says the impeachment process has been “hijacked” by the special counsel the committee hired to investigate Bentley.
A spokesperson for the House confirmed to WHNT News 19 that the committee currently does not have plans to meet.
Bentley’s attorney, Ross Garber, filed an emergency motion with the committee last week to “establish due process” in the proceedings that could lead to the governor’s impeachment. He said in a press conference the committee could not design a “more bogus process” if they tried.
Garber’s motion followed the release of a tentative schedule by Special Counsel Jack Sharman. The schedule calls for the release of his investigative report regarding the governor this Friday, both to the committee and to the public.
Sharman’s schedule would lead to the committee hearing from Sharman and potential witnesses the following Monday. Garber would be called upon to present in the governor’s defense on Tuesday.
The schedule would put impeachment, should it be recommended, up for a vote in early May.
It is worth noting that when Sharman released the schedule, he allowed for the possibility that Bentley’s lawyers would try to take the matter to court, writing, “The proposed timeline was provided as a courtesy to interested parties and is subject to change due to a number of variables that could affect the schedule, including potential litigation filed by the Office of the Governor, Gov. Bentley personally, or both.”