Candidates US House District 6 race respond to "gang of four" label

L-R: Scott Beason, Will Brooke and Gary Palmer. (

Politics, as they say, can make for strange bedfellows.{} We saw that play out Tuesday in the republican race for the district six congressional seat. Radio commercials by one of the candidates, Chad Mathis, has four other republican candidates crying foul. The ads paint Will Brooke, Scott Beason, Gary Palmer and Paul DeMarco as career politicians and political insiders. Mathis dubbed his opponents "the gang of four."{} Three of the so-called "gang" came together to fire some salvo right back at Mathis. We are one week out from the primary. So, it's unusual to have three candidates vying for an office to hold a joint news conference. Brooke, Palmer, and Beason claim Mathis, has crossed a line by distorting the truth in his campaign.{} The candidates stood side by side at The Harbert Center, defending their records.{}The gang of four website -- paid for by Mathis, claims that will Brooke donated money to liberals who supported Obamacare and calls him a "big-money Washington insider."Brooke says that couldn't be further from the truth.{} "(Mathis is) using misrepresentations that amount to fabrications, and deceptive practices in order to get his message out," says Brooke.{}The website refers to Scott Beason as a career politician who accepted a pay increase in the state senate and sided with democrats to gut ethics reform.{} Beason did accept a pay raise, but defends his record.{} Beason says, "The message to the people is to try and spin me as some liberal. And you know, as well as the people in Alabama know, no one is ever going to call me a liberal."According to Mathis, another member of the so-called gang: Gary Palmer, supported raising the state's debt limit, and a bailout of employee health benefits. Palmer fired back.{}"Mathis has publicly stated his opposition to the capital improvement trust fund that allowed us to get Thyssenkrup, and Airbus, and other companies that have created thousands of jobs for us."{}Paul DeMarco, the fourth member named by Mathis, did not participate in the news conference.{} "I'm focused on the issues that are important to the folks of the sixth congressional district," says DeMarco. "That's what's important to me, to talk about the issues, and{}I will continue to do that through election day."Mathis did not attend the news conference, but defended his method of campaigning prior to walking in to a candidates forum.{}Mathis refuses to back down.{} "They feel that this seat belongs to them. They've never given my candidacy a serious look,"{}Mathis says. "With a week out (from the primary){}they've come to the realization that someone like me, that's outside of their political club has a real shot at this thing."Will Brooke and Gary Palmer both stated during the news conference that they have{}spoken with Mathis at candidate forums and events. They say they have{}pointed out several inaccuracies in the literature Mathis was putting out{}in his campaign.Mathis denies ever speaking with the candidates.