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Alabama Ethics Commission member resigns after…a possible ethics violation

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A member of the Alabama Ethics Commission has resigned after acknowledging that he might have broken a state law by making campaign contributions. Attorney Stan McDonald confirmed his resignation in a text message sent to The Associated Press late Thursday, several days after acknowledging he had made political contributions. Alabama law prohibits commission members from giving campaign donations to candidates or participating in other partisan political activity.

McDonald issued a statement saying he was resigning after learning that some of his actions were "very possibly prohibited by law."

"My breach was unintentional but I know it's right to own my actions," McDonald said earlier this week. "I've learned from learned folks over the years that sometimes when you mess up, that all you can do is make a better decision next time. It's called doing the next right thing."

The Alabama Ethics Commission reviews ethics complaints against public officials and employees. The commission also issues guidance on what is allowed, and not allowed, under the state ethics law.

McDonald, a Republican, had been critical of a proposed revamp of the state ethics law. During a radio interview, he expressed disappointment that other members of the party were pushing the proposal, and indicated that he had contributed to campaigns. Campaign finance records show that McDonald had made about $500 in contributions since joining the commission.

The resignation will leave two vacancies on the five-member commission.

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