Disgraced Alabama Governor Resigns in Midst of Impeachment Hearings, Criminal Charges

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — The disgraced Republican governor of Alabama resigned on Monday in the midst of impeachment hearings surrounding inappropriate relations with his senior advisor, as well as related criminal charges to which he has pleaded guilty.

“I’ve always believed the honor of serving as your governor was a calling that God placed on my life,” Gov. Robert Bentley stated in his resignation speech. “I have spent the last year in deep and earnest prayer over our state and our people. I pray every morning for wisdom and guidance and forgiveness for the sins that I commit.”

As previously reported, last March, Bentley held a news conference in which he admitted to making “inappropriate comments” to Senior Political Adviser Rebekah Caldwell Mason, who is married with three children. While audio footage of the telephone discussions suggests a physical relationship, he denied the allegation, and only admitted to the “mistake” of sexually suggestive talk.

“I love you. I love to talk to you,” the governor said to Mason in one of the phone calls. “Baby, let me tell you what we’re going to have to start doing, we’re going to have to start locking the door. If we are going to do what we did the other day, we are going to have to start locking the door.”

The audio had been recorded by Dianne Bentley, the governor’s former wife, who divorced him in 2015 after capturing Bentley speaking in such manner on the phone with Mason. She had suspected an affair and left her telephone recording in the room so she could hear his conversations with the staffer.

Former Alabama Secretary of Law Enforcement Spencer Collier also blew the whistle as concerned Bentley security officer Ray Lewis played the audio footage for him as recorded by Bentley’s wife. Reports state that inappropriate text messages also exist.

In addition to losing his wife, the First Baptist Church of Tuscaloosa, which Bentley had attended for many years, told Christian News Network last year that Bentley is no longer a member of the church—and neither is Mason.

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It is not clear as to whether church discipline was exercised and the two were expelled, or whether they voluntarily left. Gil McKee, who serves as senior pastor, desired to keep the details private.

“While church discipline is a church family matter, both Governor Robert Bentley and Mrs. Rebekah Mason are no longer members of First Baptist Church Tuscaloosa,” he said. “I continue to pray for each of them.”

Bentley had at one time been a Sunday School teacher at the church, as well as a deacon. As previously reported, McKee was at odds with Bentley in 2015 after the governor determined that he would follow a court ruling on same-sex “marriage” despite his personal beliefs against it.

A month after the affair evidence came to light, lawmakers moved to impeach Bentley since he refused to resign.

“There are no grounds for impeachment, and I will vigorously defend myself and [my] administration from this political attack,” he tweeted.

Earlier this year, after then-Sen. Jeff Sessions was selected by President Trump to serve as U.S. attorney general, Bentley chose Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange to replace Sessions in the Senate. The move drew questions since Strange had requested that the House Judiciary Committee permit him to lead the investigation into Bentley.

On Friday, Jack Sharman, the special counsel for the House Judiciary Committee, released a lengthy report that asserted Bentley sought to cover up his affair and told others to keep it quiet. Bentley remained determined that he would not let the matter keep him from serving as governor.

“The people of this state have never asked to be told of or shown the intimate and embarrassing details of my personal life and my personal struggles,” he said in a press conference. “Those who are taking pleasure in humiliating and in shaming me, shaming my family, shaming my friends, well, I really don’t understand why they want to do that.”

But by Monday, Bentley was booked at the Montgomery County Jail on charges that he had failed to disclose a $50,000 personal loan to his campaign, and that he used $9,000 of campaign money for payment to Mason’s attorneys. He accepted a plea deal to avoid jail time and felony charges, and resigned hours later.

Under the deal, Bentley will be required to perform 100 hours of community service and will forfeit $37,000 of his campaign funds.

“I can no longer allow my family, my dear friends, my dedicated staff and cabinet to be subjected to the consequences that my past actions have brought upon them,” he said in his resignation speech late Monday.

“Though I have committed myself to working to improve the lives of the people of our state, there have been times that I have let you and our people down, and I am sorry for that,” Bentley stated. “The consequences of my mistakes have been grievously unfair to you, my local and dedicated staff, and my cabinet, and all of our agencies who have continued your exemplary service to our people in your respective agencies in the face of difficult circumstances.”

Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey has now been sworn in to serve as governor.

“Today is a dark day in Alabama, but also it’s one of opportunity,” she said. “I ask for your help and your patience as together we steady the ship and improve Alabama’s image.”


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  • Copyleft

    Any news on what repeatedly-disgraced Alabama Justice Roy Moore, renowned hater of the Constitution, had to say on this?

    Oh, I forgot; you’re not supposed to use the “disgraced” label on right-wing Christian nuts once they’re caught dragging the faith’s name through the mud.

    • Jason Todd

      Blatant troll post. Flagged.

  • Croquet_Player

    The “family values” politicians really have a knack for getting themselves involved in sex and finance scandals. But people keep electing them.

    • ironnat

      You are absolutely correct. To avoid these problems known scumbags should only be allowed to run for office. Those with no proclaimed values would certainly meet your criteria. Sort of like Bill and Hilary or Newt Gingrich. Bentley should have resigned, he is a disgrace.

    • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      You mean like Anthony Weiner? Bill Clinton?

      • Croquet_Player

        No, I mean like this disgusting hypocrite, Republican Robert Bentley. Weiner and Clinton weren’t trying to deny rights to LGBT people, nor was there any financial impropriety. But this “family values” “conservative” did it all.

        • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          So someone can molest little kids and rape women as long as they support LGBT rights? Man, you’ve got some screwed up ideas there.

          • Sisyphus

            What political executive has been accused of molesting children or raping women?

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            Weiner and Clinton.

          • Sisyphus

            Molestation and rape clearly don’t mean what you think they mean. Or, you are just posting ridiculous things in an attempt to play the fool.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            You don’t know what happened with Anthony Weiner, do you? Or between Bill Clinton and Juanita Brodrick?

          • Sisyphus

            Accused, not convicted. In the US people accused of crimes have rights, and are legally presumed innocent until proven guilty in court.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            They cut a plea deal with Weiner. They know he did it. And Bill Clinton’s reputation precedes itself.

          • Croquet_Player

            No, that appears to be a conservative value.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            Well logic escapes you then since Wiener and Clinton are Democrats.

          • Croquet_Player

            You have a problem with evidence and facts. You don’t have any. That’s the problem.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            I just gave you facts, and you are in denial. By the way, the Alabama governor didn’t have his day in court either.

          • Croquet_Player

            You gave absolutely nothing.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            Facts: Weiner was charged when child porn was found on his computer. Bill Clinton is a rapist. Both are Democrats. See how basic that was?

          • Croquet_Player

            False on both counts. Standard operating procedure for you. You’ll say anything at all. No regard for facts.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            You’re denying they’re Democrats? That’s rich.

          • Croquet_Player

            Pants on fire.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            Indeed yours are, but it’s sad because denial is no way to live.

          • Croquet_Player

            Liar.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            There you go again. You do know people can Google and verify what I’ve said, don’t you? Everyone knows about Weiner.

          • Croquet_Player

            You’ve already stated you don’t accept Google as a reference tool. But I would encourage anyone who does to look it up. No evidence.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            You can use any search engine, and yes, everyone look it up. Weiner is a Democrat, as is Bill Clinton. Only fools dispute that. Check out Weiner’s plea deal while you’re at it.

          • Croquet_Player

            We know they’re democrats, that’s not the issue. The rest of your claim is piffle, and by all means everyone should look it up. Congratulations on discovering Google. Big step for you. You can look up the texts between the disgraced republican former governor and his mistress. (They’re quite explicit, advise caution if children are present.)

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            You have no idea what you’re talking about. I’ve decried wiki, but never said people shouldn’t use search engines. 🙂 More of your lies? Let readers search for the NY Times piece “For Democrats, Anthony Weiner Makes an Unwelcome Return”.

          • Croquet_Player

            Yes, by all means let them look it up! Again, SO great that you use search engines now. Big step!

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            I’ve never decried search engines. What’s your problem? I’ve also given you a source that proves you wrong – again. 🙂

          • Croquet_Player

            From the comments on “Oregon Official Who Took Down Christian Bakery for Declining Same-Sex ‘Wedding’ Loses Election” article on the website, 11/16/2016.

            Me: Right. I am “making up” the fact that Greek philosophy influenced
            Christian theology. Please. Just Google “The Effects of Greek Philosophy
            on Christian Theology”. Just do it. You will find pages and pages of
            material. Scholarly papers. Apologetics. University departments which
            offer entire year-long courses on the subject. Christian seminaries
            which publish discussions online. I cannot post links on this site or I
            could offer you hundreds. Please, just go do it.

            You: Why should I do your homework for you? Especially since I already know the answer and know that you are wrong. 🙂

            You refused to use Google (or use any search engine) five months ago. It’s great that not only are you doing it now, you’re encouraging others to do it too. Or, you just refuse to use a search engine when you know the results won’t comport with your statements.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            You have a reading comprehension problem. I never said I don’t use Google. You also were trying to prove something that was easily proven wrong.

          • Croquet_Player

            You are requesting that other people use Google to look up what you call “evidence” for your claims. Yet you refuse to do it when others request of you. You behavior is entirely duplicitous. You have a trustworthiness problem.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            I asked you to use Google for 2 specific articles since we can’t link here, which is a far cry from you asking me to Google something that I’d already referenced. 🙂 You were caught making up facts (much like you’re doing now) and I called you out on it.

          • Croquet_Player

            No, dear. You’ve been caught out. Accept it and move on. Bye!!!

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            The only thing that’s been caught is your obvious lack of reading comprehension skills, and your penchant for untruths. 🙂

        • ironnat

          You are messed up. Clinton’s with no financial impropriety????

          • Ambulance Chaser

            Considering the Starr Report turned up nothing, and so has every other investigation they’ve been subjected to, yes.

          • Sisyphus

            Seems Clinton’s trouble started when he tried to deny his affair. The sexual impropriety should have been of no consequence and really nobody’s business as far as his presidency was concerned. Lying to Congress was the impeachable offense.

          • Bob Johnson

            Name a president who hasn’t lied to Congress.

          • Sisyphus

            What is your point, a crime should be overlooked if others do it as well?

    • Amos Moses

      the first disqualification for holding a public office should be the desire to hold it ………… politicians first and foremost talent is compromise ….. and this guy did ……..

  • Copyleft

    Ahh, more blatant hypocrisy from the pious family-values crowd….

  • William of Glynn

    More proof that the Christian religion is nothing more than a social club.

    • Amos Moses

      politicians first and foremost talent is compromise ….. and this guy did …….. but you are surprised ….. DUH ……….

    • Sisyphus

      Religion does have sociological benefits, but politicians will say what is needed to get elected. More of an indictment of the election process, and the people that keep voting based on pandering and patronization.

    • Jason Todd

      Pardon?

    • Tree Kangaroo

      What is the source of homosexuals’ delusion that Christians want their approval?

      I mean, seriously. Do you think your opinions matter to people of faith? Who would want your approval? You molest little boys and spread AIDS. Decent people would not want to be liked by homosexuals.

      • William of Glynn

        No, it’s Christians who molest little boys and little girls. Rabidly anti-gay Pastor Kenneth Adkins was found guilty yesterday in Glynn County, Georgia, of eight counts of child molestation.

        • Jason Todd

          No, it’s Christians who molest little boys and little girls.

          *coughNAMBLAcough*

        • Omnicopy

          Ever heard of false pastors?

          • William of Glynn

            No such thing as a false pastor.

          • Omnicopy

            Yes there are! There are lots of them!

          • William of Glynn

            You might disagree with them, but they are pastors nonetheless.

        • Tree Kangaroo

          Gay men do not molest boys?
          You sure you want to stand by that?
          You do realize that 30 seconds on any search engine will pull up literally hundreds of arrests of gay men – including gay couples – who prey on boys.

          So you’re lying. Gay men DO prey on boys.

          • William of Glynn

            You’re probably okay with straight men preying on little girls because you might consider heterosexuality to be normal.

          • Jason Todd

            Troll post. Flagged.

          • William of Glynn

            You’re probably okay with straight men preying on little girls because you might consider heterosexuality to be normal.

      • Copyleft

        What is the source of -Christians’- delusions that their approval is needed or wanted by the rest of us? Your religious rules apply to you and ONLY you.

      • William of Glynn

        The approval of a fundamentalist Christian is the last thing I seek. Hypocrisy is part of their lifestyle and they cannot be trusted.

  • TheLastHonestLawyer

    That’s the Hat Trick. Alabama has no lost the heads of the executive, legislative, and judicial arms of their government to corruption scandals.

    Why on Earth do people keep believing that these guys live what they peddle? Conservative Christians have to be the most gullible voters on Earth. They keep swallowing the same line year after year and keep getting burned.

  • Garden of Love

    Just a reminder about one of the great heroes of the Bible: King David.

    Yeah, God’s people sin. Christians aren’t perfect, just forgiven.

    • Coach

      Good point about David, but he was repentant, read Psalms 51, this man seems to be sorry he was caught and lacking fruit of genuine repentance, but downplaying his sin, which is consistent with false converts.

      Also, Christians sin, but if the Christian walks in the same manner as a non-Christian, then they’re most likely lost and not true Christians.

  • Grace Kim Kwon

    Good that he has pleaded guilty. May God have mercy on Alabama.

  • BuckeyePhysicist

    For a Republican, adultery leads to embarrassment, shame, and resignation. For a Democrat, adultery is a resume enhancer.