Yellowhammer News has confirmed that the Alabama Supreme Court has granted cert on former House of Representatives Speaker Mike Hubbard’s appeal on his 2016 ethics conviction.
This means that the state’s highest court will hear Hubbard’s appeal.
Former Lt. Governor and Attorney General Bill Baxley, Hubbard’s attorney, told Yellowhammer News, “We’re delighted, we were hopeful. We thought we were right and it should’ve been granted.”
“We’re looking forward to the briefing and the argument,” he added.
The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals upheld Hubbard’s conviction on 11 of 12 counts in the fall. His request for a rehearing was then denied, setting the stage for an appeal to the state Supreme Court.
Baxley explained that a “combination of issues” will be a part of Hubbard’s appeal to the Supreme Court.
“We’re arguing that they just didn’t prove their case that he violated the law, knowingly violated the law,” Baxley said. “That’s pretty much an open-ended argument that we’ve made before, because we think it’s true in this case. There’s just so many things that they did not prove.”
Baxley continued, “He did – Mike did – basically what they accused of him doing, but we’re saying what he did wasn’t in violation of the ethics law as it’s written. And [that] he did not think he was violating the law when he was doing it because he thought it wasn’t a violation of the law and he thought he’d bent over backwards to try to get it okay’ed by the ethics commission – and thought that he had.”
He added that the appeal “is not narrow, one-issue” but a “shotgun approach” for almost everything they have been arguing.
This is a breaking story and may be updated.
Update 5:45 p.m.:
In a statement, Attorney General Steve Marshall said, “Until now, the Alabama Supreme Court has only heard from Mike Hubbard. Once my prosecution team has the opportunity to brief the issues and argue the case, we feel confident the result will be the same as with the lower court rulings and justice will prevail.”
Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn