The Bill Barnes for U.S. Senate campaign in Alabama was bolstered pre-election weekend by unprecedented help by Democratic officials following recent news reports about his hard-hitting questions of officials in both parties on sensitive issues.

Democrats unveiled robo-calls over the weekend in the state announcing Saturday’s endorsement by President Obama of the Barnes candidacy. The precise reasons remain unclear for the late show of party support for Barnes, the Democratic primary winner. But the support came after Barnes vigorously questioned the health of four-term Republican incumbent Sen. Dick Shelby in recent weeks, as well as the oversight efforts of White House, Justice Department and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials in specific areas of popular concern in Alabama.

Our non-partisan Justice Integrity Project (JIP) played a role in this by hosting Barnes Oct. 22 at a National Press Club news briefing in Washington, DC in cooperation with the Club’s McClendon Group, which present speakers with strong views often overlooked by the traditional news media.

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Eddie Curran, a former Alabama newspaperman who’s spent years denouncing the state’s former Gov. Don Siegelman, hosted a strange news conference on Oct. 29 at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.

Curran rented the room to promote his self-published book, The Governor of Goat Hill. He spent most of his time venting against the New York Times, CBS, Time and Harper’s for their long-ago coverage of the nearly decade-long investigation of Siegelman. Siegelman, now 64, was Alabama’s governor from 1999 to 2003. A Democrat, he was convicted of corruption charges in 2006, primarily for urging a businessman to contribute to a non-profit group advocating a state lottery to fund more education spending and then reappointing the donor to a state board.

Curran’s biased, disorganized and self-indulgent presentation flopped, however, for reasons worth exploring again even though Alabama journalist Roger Shuler skewered Curran for precisely the same shortcomings nearly three years ago in, “Deconstructing Eddie Curran.”

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As the first guest Oct. 28 on my radio show Washington Update, New Jersey journalist Melissa Hayes described the acquittal of a local mayor in a nationally important corruption case that’s part of the reform credentials of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Then Ron Winter, an award-winning journalist and military commentator, provided lessons from his dramatic new consumer book, Granny Snatching, about his fight against relatives to help his 92-year-old widowed mother live at home in dignity. Winter seeks national legislation to prevent similar abuses.

Hear the show nationwide with my co-host Scott Draughon on the My Technology Lawyer Radio Network by archive here. I recently published, “Politicians, Press Cheat Taxpayers by Ignoring DOJ’s Wasteful Witch-Hunts” about the 46-defendant “Bid Rig III” corruption investigation in New Jersey. The indictments last year helped propel the Republican Christie, New Jersey's former U.S. attorney, to the state’s governorship.

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Ralph Nader helped conclude a cutting-edge energy conference Oct. 9 in the nation's capital by describing what the public must do to reduce harsh new job losses and similar hardship.

"Deal with public sentiment,” he told a rapt audience at the annual convention of Association for the Study of Peak Oil & Gas, USA (ASPO-USA) in urging steps to achieve better-informed voters and consumers.  “Half the population doesn’t believe in global warming.”  Create a “purposeful Congress,” was his next theme.  “It’s the most powerful branch of government [in the Constitution], except it doesn’t like to use its power,” Nader said. “It likes to send it to the White House.” His final suggestion is drawn from his latest book, “Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!”  In a novelistic approach, he portrays how real-life billionaires could help preserve the world’s economic systems and ecology.

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Jim Baldauf, co-founder of a cutting-edge energy group, began its briefing at the National Press Club Oct. 7 by citing the BP Gulf oil disaster, drought in Russia at up to 130 degrees, and massive flood-devastation in Pakistan as evidence that this is the worst year for the environment in recent history.

"I would submit," he said, "that all of these tragedies are due to Peak Oil. Peak Oil will affect every aspect of our life."

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The Justice Department Monday announced arrests of two Alabama gambling kingpins and four legislators in a corruption probe primarily targeting Democratic office-holders and contributors. But federal authorities ruined their probe's credibility from the outset by relying on prosecutors implicated in the nation's two most notorious public corruption investigations of the last decade.

The story below describes a fiasco by the Justice Department, which has selectively ignored serious allegations of wrongdoing by top Alabamans, most notably by current Gov. Bob Riley, right, and other so-called "anti-gambling" politicians and their supporters.

A likely 2012 Republican presidential candidate, Riley has been harshly attacked on ethics grounds for many years including by some in his own party. He helped initiate the current indictment by closing Alabama's casinos. This appeases Riley's anti-gambling constituents and his past Mississippi funders who want Alabama gamblers to keep streaming into their casinos.

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