MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A Montgomery judge on Thursday dismissed challenger Troy King's lawsuit against Attorney General Steve Marshall over hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions Marshall received from the Republican Attorneys General Association.
Circuit Judge James Anderson dismissed King's lawsuit alleging that the contributions came from illegal transfers between political action committees. The judge also denied King's request for a temporary restraining order to block Marshall from spending the funds ahead of Tuesday's GOP runoff for attorney general.
King argued $735,000 in contributions that Marshall received from the Washington D.C.-based RAGA Action Fund violated the state's 2010 ban on transfers between political action committees since the group received contributions from other PACs before giving the money to Marshall. Anderson, however, said the Republican PAC is federally regulated and questioned how he and state law would have jurisdiction over the contributions that happened in another state.
King, who was attorney general from 2004 to 2011, said he was taking his case to voters on Tuesday, while the Marshall campaign called the lawsuit an election eve stunt.
"Troy King has abused the judicial and ethics process this week to stage a political stunt. He did so routinely as AG and Republicans fired him in 2010 because of it. We are glad the court has confirmed this and look forward to getting back to the issues Alabama voters actually care about in the final days of this campaign," the Marshall campaign in a statement.
King criticized the ruling, saying he believed the law was clear.
"It's a sad, sad day that we have decided to allow a group like the Republican Attorneys General Association to attempt to buy the office of attorney general in this state," King said. The RAGA Action Fund money accounts for nearly one-quarter of the money in Marshall's campaign coffers.
"We will continue this battle on the ballot on Tuesday, and I'm confident that the people of Alabama are not going to stand for what has just happened in this courtroom," King said.
Asked if he was appealing Anderson's ruling, King replied he was appealing to the "court of public opinion."