Alabama Republican hit for hosting poker games

Poker-playing could be a controversial issue in the debate between Alabama House candidates Rick Barber (R) and Martha Roby (R) Monday night at Troy University in Dothan.

Barber has come under fire for hosting poker tournaments at his DeJa Vu pool hall in Montgomery.

The Concerned Women Political Action Committee, which has endorsed Roby, said hosting the nightly games showed Barber doesn't have "commonsense values."

Barber has said he didn't make any money directly from hosting the games. "This is a bunch of folks getting together just like you would at home," he told WSFA TV.

The Washington-backed Roby finished first in the June 1 primary with about 48 percent of the vote, just shy of the 50 percent she needed to avoid meeting Barber in the July 13 runoff.

The runoff campaign has seen Barber release some colorful ads. His latest, released online with a plea to supporters for donations to get it on the air, features an actor playing Abraham Lincoln likening taxation to "slavery."

The winner of the July 13 vote faces Rep. Bobby Bright (D-Ala.) in November.