Riley, lawmakers applaud slugger
Gov. Bob Riley talks to boxer Deontay Wilder of Tuscaloosa, who won a bronze medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, at the Capitol on Thursday.
Wilder, a heavyweight, was at the Capitol to push for a bill that would create a state boxing commission, which would sanction professional fights in the state.
The Legislature passed the bill on Thursday after state Rep. Gerald Allen, R-Tuscaloosa, had tried for years to get the bill through.
Riley congratulated Wilder for winning the medal. Lawmakers also applauded Wilder for his accomplishment.
Wilder, who has a professional record of 3-0, has been taking time from training to come to Montgomery to encourage lawmakers to pass the bill. He wants to fight in his home state. He was the only American fighter to win a medal in the 2008 Olympics.
Supporters of the bill have said bringing fights to the state could attract tourists and help the economy.
-- posted by Sebastian Kitchen