They all can’t be lead horses

December 13, 2017

By Steve Flowers

Inside the Statehouse

The legendary Speaker of the U.S. House, Sam Rayburn, coined a famous phrase he used often and imparted to young congressmen when they would arrive on Capitol Hill full of vim and vigor. He would sit down with them and invite them to have a bourbon and branch water with him. The old gentleman, who had spent nearly half a century in the Congress, after hearing their ambitions of how they were going to change the world, would look them in the eye and say, “You know here in Congress there are 435 prima donnas and they all can’t be lead horses.” Then the Speaker in his Texas drawl would say, “If you want to get along, you have to go along.”
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Doug Jones may get close, but close only counts in horseshoes

December 6, 2017

By Steve Flowers
Inside the Statehouse

The final vote for the remaining three years of Jeff Sessions six-year term in the U.S. Senate will be next Tuesday.  The race is between Democrat Doug Jones and Republican Roy Moore.

Jeff Sessions is probably sorry he left his safe Senate seat of 20-years to be at the Justice Department in a tentative position with constant ridicule from an irrational, egomaniac as president.

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A tribute to a great Alabamian

November 29, 2017

By Steve Flowers
Inside the Statehouse

Jim Martin passed away recently in Gadsden at 99 years old.  His beloved wife of 70 years, Pat, was by his side.  He was a true Christian gentleman.  Jim was one of the Fathers of the modern Republican Party in the South.

In 1962, John Kennedy was President. Camelot was in full bloom.  The Congress was controlled by Democrats only because the South was solidly Democratic. The southern bloc of senators and congressmen were all Democrats. Because of their enormous seniority, they controlled both houses of Congress.

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The big question will be answered soon

November 22, 2017

By Steve Flowers
Inside the Statehouse

The big question in the Senate race is will allegations against Roy Moore and his purported propensities forty-years ago cause him to lose.  We will soon see.  The election is less than three weeks away.

The book on Moore is easy to read.  The polls have consistently revealed that 30 percent of voters like him and 70 percent do not like him.  He is a polarizing figure and well known.

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Baker leads Alabama Community College System into the future

November 15, 2017

By Steve Flowers
Inside the Statehouse

In March of this year, the Alabama Community College System took a giant leap forward when it brought on a giant in state government and one of Alabama’s preeminent leaders, Jimmy Baker, to be chancellor.

When you have a conversation with Chancellor Baker, he uses words that you do not normally hear in the same sentence, like, “exciting,” and, “community college.” He says it is an exciting time. For a myriad of reasons, across the state, community colleges and technical training have been viewed as second best when it comes to higher education options. Sit down with Chancellor Baker, and you will leave convinced that Alabama’s community colleges can do more to move the state forward than any other entity in the state.

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Looking at races and ruin

November 8, 2017

INSIDE THE STATEHOUSE

By Steve Flowers

We still have the culmination of the race for the seat of Jeff Sessions set to be determined in less than five weeks on December 12. Roy Moore, as the Republican nominee, is the favorite. However, the Democrat, Doug Jones could make it a closer race than first thought. He has raised some money and gained some traction, and Moore has a good many detractors among Republican and independent voters.

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Alabama’s Silver Haired Legislature

November 1, 2017

INSIDE THE STATEHOUSE
By Steve Flowers

With all the changes and uncertainty surrounding Alabama government in recent months, including political appointments, high level resignations, special elections, runoff elections and a host of new candidates tossing their names into the 2018 election circus, Alabamians might be relieved to know one thing remains steady and solid and many may never have heard of it – Alabama’s Silver Haired Legislature is one of Alabama’s crown jewels.

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Political fortunes come and go

October 18, 2017

By Steve Flowers
Inside the State House

Now that the dust has settled from the Republican Senate primary, we can focus on the much-anticipated 2018 elections.

Kay Ivey is definitely running for governor. She raised over one million dollars in a few short weeks in August with an exploratory committee. As of the last reporting period, she has raised $1.2 million followed closely by Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle, who is at $1.1 million.

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Here comes the judge

October 4, 2017

Inside the Statehouse
By Steve Flowers

Judge Roy Moore and his wife, Kayla, made their traditional horseback ride to their voting place in Gallant in Etowah County, last Tuesday and when all the votes were counted that night, they won a resounding victory. Moore’s capture of the GOP Senate nomination was impressive. A 55-45 margin is not a total trouncing, but is considered a landslide.

Despite being outspent by the Washington establishment 15-to-1, Moore prevailed. His solid bloc of conservative evangelical voters stood strong against an avalanche of negative ads.

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We need another Jim Allen

September 27, 2017

INSIDE THE STATEHOUSE

By Steve Flowers

As one of America’s most conservative states, we have a history of electing very conservative senators. Jeff Sessions proved to be one of the most archconservative members of the U.S. Senate during his 20-year tenure.

Another archconservative that served 10 years in the Senate from 1968 to 1978 was the great Jim Allen. Jim Allen had an illustrious career in Alabama politics. He was born and raised in Gadsden, Ala. He served in the Alabama House and the Alabama Senate from his native Etowah County. He was elected to his first term as lieutenant governor of Alabama in 1950 and to a second term in 1962. He was lieutenant governor during George Wallace’s first term as governor. He was also a very successful lawyer in Gadsden.

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