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Figures first female legislative leader makes history

By Susan Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY-At the Tuesday opening of the 2013 Legislative Session, Senator Vivian Figures (D-Mobile) was welcomed by President Pro Temp Del Marsh (R-Anniston) as the new Minority Leader of the Senate. Figures takes this position as the first female to serve as a majority or minority leader in either the Senate or the House of Representatives in the state of Alabama.

“I am definitely very humbled and honored to serve in this position and I look forward to working with all the senators as we deliberate all the bills to come before us and can find common ground as we all work together towards solutions,” said Figures.

Marsh said, “Although I truly enjoyed working with Senator Bedford, I look forward to the future and working with Senator Figures. I am excited, Senator, I really think this is going to be a session with a lot of bipartisan support.”

On the desk of each senator and on the desk of Lt. Governor Kay Ivey were place paper sacks with goodies inside. There were red ones on the desks of Republicans and blue ones on the desks of Democrats. Figures identified these as “Lt. Governor’s survival kit and a Senator’s survival kits.” According to legislators the bag contained BandAids, and eraser and a nail file.

Figures opened saying, “First of all let me say that I give God on the honor and the glory, and I pray we will have a wonderful session, and look forward to that. I thank my democratic colleagues and thank them for their confidence in me as minority leader.”

There was a poem attached to the outside of all of the bags. Figures read the poem out loud stating that this is what she hoped would be the tone of this session among the senators both Republican and Democrat.

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“Author is unknown and there is no title:

Doing unto others as you would have them do unto you, may be seem so very impossible to do.

But if you will try to trust and believe there are many great joys that you will receive.

The Lord makes us patient, understanding and kind, and we change with our hearts and not with our minds.

For as soon as love enters the open door, the faults we once saw are not there anymore.

And the times that were wrong begin too look right reviewed in the softness of love’s gentle light.

For loves gentle ways are wondrous and strange and there is nothing in light that love cannot change.”

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She said that she hoped that the Alabama Senate could begin the session with love “because we are all God’s children and He wants us to love one another.”

The Senate will be in committee meetings on Wednesday and will re-convene Wednesday at 11:00 a.m.

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