MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Political experts say Republicans trying to win the Alabama governor's office and take control of the Legislature could benefit from federal vote-buying charges against several powerful Statehouse figures, even though the charges touched both parties.
They say the GOP had already staked out corruption in Montgomery as its main campaign theme, based on the bribery conviction of former Democratic Gov. Don Siegelman and three Democratic legislators in the two-year college scandal. In addition, the outgoing Republican governor, Bob Riley, has fought to curb gambling. Athens State University political scientist Jess Brown calls it an early Christmas present for Republicans.
He and retired University of Alabama political scientist William Stewart say it's another problem for Democratic gubernatorial nominee Ron Sparks, who favors legalizing and taxing gambling.
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