Most rational Alabamians probably concluded that former Gov. Robert Bentley was a corrupt, dishonest rube about the time he resigned in April 2017, after pleading guilty to two misdemeanors. If there is any doubt that Bentley is a loon, it should be erased by Bentley's words in a deposition, revealed this week.
What is the surest sign Bentley is so narcissistic and self-righteous that his visions of grandiosity form a disconnect with reality? My No. 1 choice is this: Audio evidence shows that Bentley delighted in massaging the boobs and exploring the nether regions of married senior adviser Rebekah Caldwell Mason, but he now says such behavior was not -- I repeat, NOT -- inappropriate.
If you have forgotten the contents of the Bentley audio, we have a transcript here, courtesy of Yellowhammer News. As for the deposition, we invite you to take a gander at these words from Bentley, on pages 176 and 177, and try not to spew. (The full deposition is embedded at the end of this post.) The questioning, from attorney Kenneth Mendelsohn, focuses on Bentley's divorce from his wife of 50 years, Dianne:
Q. Was the relationship between you and Rebekah Mason the reason for the divorce?
MS. MAYS: Object to the form.
A. It was one of the reasons, yes.
Q. And I understand you say that there was no consummation of your love, but Mrs. Bentley did not like the relationship that you had with Mrs. Mason?
MR. SEGALL: Object to the form.
A. No, she did not.
Q. And she believed that as a married man, and certainly a man that had been married for right around 50 years, that having such a relationship with Ms. Mason was inappropriate?
MR. SEGALL: Object to the form.
A. I'm sure that she did.
Q. Do you consider the relationship inappropriate?
A. No.Bentley even struggles to admit he owed the people of Alabama an apology. He decides to play the "clueless oaf" card, a role for which he is particularly well suited. From pages 177-178:
Q. And there have been a couple of occasions where you apologized to the people of the state of Alabama. Do you recall those?
A. I do.
Q. What were you apologizing for?
A. The first time I apologized was in a press conference, that was the day that Spencer [Collier] had his press conference; but at that time, I don't know what I was apologizing for, because I didn't know what I was even talking about. I didn't know what was released. You know, I apologized for inappropriate things that I may have said, but at that time I didn't know what those things were. And if I had it to do over again, I probably would not have had a press conference that day. But the second time that I apologized, then all of this had been brought out. I mean, I still didn't know what was on the tapes, I never knew that until they were actually released. So the second time that I apologized, it was up in Huntsville, and I wanted an opportunity to do that, I did do that. I said, "I own these. If it's my voice, I own them. I do not deny it, and I want to apologize to the people of the state and to anybody that was hurt from them."
Good Lord, this guy makes Shallow Hal sound like Alistair Cooke.