What's the Alabama Republican Party going to do with Terry Dunn? You see, he's unwilling to toe the party line that even asking legitimate questions about Alabama Power's utility rates and policies is tantamount to a surrender to “fancy San Francisco environmental lawyers.“
Dunn sent a letter to the state party to protest the smear campaign that's being run against him:
I am writing to set the record straight about a couple of things. After reading this, you will know the facts; but, even more importantly, I hope you will share my profound concern about what makes this e-mail necessary: a smear campaign orchestrated against a Republican by fellow Republicans.
As you read below about the lies that have been circulating in recent weeks, I hope you will see them for what they are: a desperate attempt to avoid any genuine transparency in the regulation of investor-owned utilities' financial returns in Alabama – the rest, my friends, is smoke and mirrors.
As a longtime businessman with Republican values, I believe strongly in the principles of a free and fair market. Government should stay out of the way and allow companies to compete on merit. However, the job to which you elected me in 2010 does not involve the free market; it involves monopolies operating in protected territories.
He's not being hyperbolic in his rhetoric about “smear campaigns,” “smear sheets,” and “lies” being told about his staff. For proof, look at what PSC Commissioner Twinkle posted. You really, really want to read her entire letter on the subject of utility rate review, published in PDF format on the Alabama PSC Web site. It deftly combines paranoia, platitudes, and political extremism. Here's a sample:
These environmental groups will use any tool at their disposal, including biased media reports, sleight of hand misdirection and other sideshow issues and antics in order to achieve their goal. Because conservative states like Alabama have proven hostile to the liberal environmentalists' cause, they are now hiding behind a curtain like the Wizard of Oz while personally directing the push for formal PSC hearings to investigate the finances of the state's utilities.
Twinkle, calm down and think this through… maybe get a blood pressure test or something….
Are you seriously alleging that “liberal environmentalists” have managed to convert a Republican PSC member to their cause? Are their skills that good – or is Dunn some sort of “Manchurian Commissioner” who has been quietly laying his path to power for decades by:
- Donating to the Alabama Republican Party
- Coercing his wife, Alicia, to do the same
- Fooling his fellow Etowah County and State Republicans who elected him to the county and state GOP executive committees.
- Fooling the voters and snagging a coveted spot as delegate to the Republican National Convention in 2004 and 2008. Though I guess some of them are on to him… he only got to be an alternate delegate in 2012.
- Getting himself elected as a Republican to the PSC in 2010 and 2012.
If so, this guy's good. Why he may have the same “handlers” as that Kenyan/Muslim in the White House. Twinkle, why don't you get Hugh McInnish on the trail, ASAP? I'm sure he can clear this up in no time….
While that all sounds fun and is, I'm sure, totally plausible to a large segment of the Alabama Republican Party – you know, the 64% of Republicans who still question the President's citizenship, it's bunk.
We all know what's going on here. Twinkle and her fellow PSC commissioners are dancing with their real constituency – Alabama Power and big money interests – and shunning the voters who put them into office.
How Terry Dunn became immune to this is a mystery and a marvel. Could it possibly be this simple? Have Alabama voters actually elected a public official who really believes that his job is to serve the public interest?
If so, no wonder Mike Hubbard has a burr under his tail about Dunn taking his job too seriously.