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Chip Drago
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The Political Round-Up

Winner, winner, chicken dinner;
No place for politics;
'I'll come out for ya or agin' ya,
whatever'll hep'; Intra-party face-offs;
Don't tug on Superman's cape, don't spit etc. etc.

By Chip Drago
Mobile Bay Times
The University of South Alabama Health System could be the Mobile area's big institutional winner financially when health care reform kicks in. USA has long provided most of the indigent care in the Mobile area, particularly after Providence Hospital relocated from Spring Hill Avenue at Catherine and Lafayette Streets to Airport Blvd. in west Mobile 23 years ago.

With insurance coverage broadened, USA stands to be compensated for care that in the past has been provided at considerable losses.

An actual figure won't be known for some time, according to USA spokesman Keith Ayers.

"We have traditionally provided the lion's share of indigent care," Ayers acknowledged. "At this point, we are awaiting the writing of regulations in the bill to determine the likely outcomes, but at this time it is hard to tell anything definitive. Certainly, receiving compensation for care provided is a move in the right direction, but many questions remain."

Standing on neutral ground
Don Foster will appear on the ballot in November as the Democratic candidate for Mobile County district attorney. Left up to him though, the election would be non-partisan, as would, for that matter, all judicial posts, too. A former Clinton appointee as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Alabama, Foster isn't a reluctant Democrat. However, on balance, the legal system would be better served and public confidence more easily kept if its most high profile figures, judges and prosecutors, did not hold the job as a political partisans of either party, according to Foster.

Rolling out those endorsements
Mobile County Sheriff Sam Cochran flirted with an endorsement of Tim James for governor but apparently has decided to remain publicly uncommitted, now that he has opposition for re-election. Some of the department's executive leadership is in James' camp, though. Cochran is unopposed for re-election in the Republican primary. He will face Democrat Will Johnson in the general election in November.

Former Sheriff Jack Tillman is in James' corner.

The James campaign expects some notable endorsements in south Alabama later this month. 

Mobile Mayor Sam Jones earlier this year announced his support for Democratic candidate Artur Davis with much ballyhoo during a media event at the Battle House. Jones remains in Davis' camp though the mayor, like many Democrats, disagreed with the congressman's vote against the Obama Administration's health care reform legislation. Jones said he has made Davis aware of his position on the health care reform bill.

Fish to fry
The Faust Family Fish Fry for House District 94 state Rep. Joe Faust is set for 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the Bay Village Store, southwest corner of Hwys. 34 and 181.

True enough ... darn it
A recent email from a judge carried a signature coda: 'Democracy is a device that ensures we shall be governed no better than we deserve.'
- George Bernard Shaw

More intra-party face-offs
The Herman Thomas/Vivian Figures-state Senate District 33, Ashley Rich/Mark Erwin-Mobile County District Attorney and Judy Newcomb/Hallie Dixon/David Green/Ken Hitson-Baldwin County District Attorney face-offs aren't the only intra-party contests on the ballot June 1.

Hank Cobb and Clay Barclay vie in a generational scrap for Place 13 from Mobile County on the state Republican Executive Committee. In Baldwin County, George Williams and Don McGriff battle for the Place 4 slot.

Running unopposed in Mobile County are:


Uncontested Baldwin County slots on the state committee are:


Don't you mess with Eliot Ness
Attorneys for a lobbyist with ties to Dothan's Country Crossings casino have filed a formal complaint with the Department of Justice's Office of Professional Responsibility in which they accuse FBI agents of bullying, "veiled threats," and political coercion in their investigation of bingo legislation and its progress in this session of the state Legislature.

District 7 pow-wow
Mobile City Councilwoman Gina Gregory will host a District 7 community meeting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in the Mobile Museum of Art auditorium, 4850 Museum Drive. New Mobile Police Chief Michael Williams will be the featured speaker. Williams recently pulled city police from the FBI's Violent Crimes Task Force here. Assistant Chief Lester Hargrove said the redeployment was temporary and came because of MPD's need to "put more officers on the street; first things first." Other sources had attributed the move to a clash with federal authorities.

State legislators whose districts include District 7 have also been invited, according to Gregory.

Dems get together
The Mobile County Democratic Executive Committee will meet April 15 at 6:30 p.m. in the library at Davidson High School on Pleasant Valley Road.

Bonner, Bentley top ESRW card
GOP political candidates Dr. Robert Bentley and U.S. Rep. Jo Bonner will address the Eastern Shore Republican Women luncheon meeting Monday, April 19 at 11:30 a.m. at the Fairhope Yacht Club. Guests and prospective members are welcome. Lunch is $16.  Reservations should be made by Thursday, April 15 to Lucy Sundbeck, lhsundbeck@aol.com or call 929-0081.

Bentley, a state legislator from Tuscaloosa, is running for governor. Bonner is seeking re-election to Congress.

Coming up
Scheduled to speak to the Knollwood Republican
Women’s Club in coming weeks are:


The club meets at Gordon Oaks Retirement Community at 3159 Knollwood Drive, Building B Dining Room
at 2 p.m.
431-9444
350 Dauphin St.
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