Thursday, April 27, 2017

The Alabama Senate Race Gets Crazy

In Alabama's most outrageous Senate race, Roy Moore is in

Roy Moore is running for U.S. Senate.


Which means that no less than three candidates - Moore, the Christian Coalition guy and Rep. Ed Henry - will probably seek the "backed by God" mantle.

Sorta like The Bachelor in search of God's rose.

It could get uncomfortable.

This race, the special election for the seat abandoned by now-U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and assumed by now-tainted U.S. Sen. Luther Strange, is a downhill sprint that might just end in a heap outside a Sand Mountain Dollar General.

There is Moore, who has name recognition surpassing even the sitting senator. But it ain't all good. The guy has been booted off the Alabama Supreme Court twice. He says it was for standing up for your rights. Rights groups say it's because if you don't fit into his definition of rights your rights are wrong.

Strange would have been the presumptive favorite if not for, well, current events. The downward spiral and subsequent earthly impact of ex-Gov. Robert Bentley didn't just take out the governor, it left Strange's reputation in a smoking pile. The former attorney general is now widely seen as the guy who was willing to look the other way on potential gubernatorial crimes if Bentley would appoint him to his dream job.  

Henry - a guy who hounded Bentley for months - now claims the crown of corruption fighter in chief.  "Trump's going to need help draining the swamp," he said when entering the race. But I'll never stop seeing this "corruption fighter" clapping like a seal on speed at a pep rally supporting former House Speaker Mike Hubbard, the current poster child for Alabama corruption.  

Randy Brinson, president of the Christian Coalition of Alabama, has also announced his candidacy, bristling against corruption and the "venality of politicians."

Hard to argue that, and this race is case in point.

The wild card - if he's even in this race - is Alabama Senate President Pro Tempore Del Marsh, who has made a decision about whether to run but had not, as of this posting, decided to share that decision.

He's a somewhat boring businessman, who along with Hubbard dominated the Alabama GOP for years, although he has managed to do it without becoming a household name. He'll take heat for being a silk-stocking Republican, a part of the Goat Hill status quo. He won't claim the anointing of God but will probably get a sprinkling from the BCA, which in Alabama politics is pretty close to the same thing.

His biggest asset - and this could be a big thing - is that he's not, as far as I know, crazy as a bag of jackhammers.

As a matter of fact that should be his slogan, should he choose to run: "Del Marsh: The practically sane one."

This thing is gonna get hairy fast. The primary election - and in blood-red Alabama the election that counts is the Republican primary - is in August, so name recognition and money will be big.

Strange has already been able to build a campaign war chest of almost $800,000, but he's got as much baggage as he has money.

Moore hasn't been as successful raising money in the past - and his last attempt at governor was a dismal failure - but he has a big name and a committed base. But he, too, has as much baggage as he has base. And Henry and Brinson could peel off some of his votes.

If I had to lay odds now - assuming Marsh makes it into the race -- I'd say Strange finishes third to Moore and Marsh.

And while Moore seems a shoo-in to make the runoff, he could very well lose to Marsh.

But then, maybe I'm putting too much stock in "practically sane."

The pretty picture above has nothing to do with the article but is a palate cleanser since politics can leave a bad taste in your mouth.


Susan said...

Are there any contenders on the Democratic side or does that party not exist in Alabama?

Joe said...

So far, no Democrats have thrown their hat in the ring.

JiEL said...

It's so obvious that NO «démocrate mice» would jump into this snake basket.

Sorry to say but those «redneck» states are such retrograde and not open to more liberal thinking. They still live in the 19th century ideas.

That is what USA is made of: lot of contradiction of point of views regarding of where you are in the country.
The USA political map says it all: the west coast and east coast states are more liberal and the central ones (Bible belt included) are hard conservative ones.

Those aren't yet in the 21st century...

It's the usual American duality.
No substantial changes are coming out in the next 4 years and more.