Southern Company

Lies and Impunity Kill Canary

As the Business Council of Alabama collapses on the eve of the Oliver Robinson Criminal Bribery Trial, our readers ask why did Alabama Power and others seek leadership change?

Bill Britt of the Alabama Political Reporter writes this morning:

For over a year, [Alabama Power CEO Mark] Crosswhite and other prominent business executives worked quietly in the background to restore credibility to the once venerable business organization after its CEO, Billy Canary, took the witness stand in Lee County and discredited himself in defense of then-Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard.

Canary not only prevaricated, he outright denied the sworn testimony of one of his closest associates, who said after Canary’s testimony, “I didn’t know you could lie.” Despite Canary’s efforts to fool the jury, Hubbard was convicted of 12 felony counts of public corruption, and it was finally proven in open court that Canary had colluded with Hubbard’s schemes to use his office to enrich himself.

Pulitzer prize-winning journalist John Archibald writes:

Canary drooled all over himself from the witness stand in Hubbard’s ethics trial, and it didn’t do any good. Hubbard was convicted and sentenced to prison, and Canary has bumbled ever since. He set out to kill a popular autism insurance bill – using every disgusting means necessary – but tripped over his own failure to comprehend that legislators could choose compassion over Big Mule profit.

He failed to deliver on gas tax legislation, which Big Mules love because it means lucrative road construction. He dissed some legislators by not inviting them to a BCA retreat. He supported bribed Rep. Oliver Robinson, and was flanks-deep in discouraging cleanup of the Superfund site in North Birmingham that doomed Robinson. That the accused bribers from Balch & Bingham and Drummond Co. go to trial next week should not be lost on anyone.


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