By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
On Thursday, the Greater Birmingham Young Republicans held their November meeting and the group elected their 2014 officers. Jackie Curtiss was elected Chairman without any opposition. Curtiss was a delegate to the 2012 Republican Convention and served on the GOP’s platform committee.
Curtiss is a past State Committeewoman for the GBYR and served on the group’s finance committee. Curtiss was Vice President of the Sons and Daughters of Liberty while a student at Montevallo and has been an active volunteer in numerous campaigns across the state. Curtiss could not be at the meeting due to illness.
Alabama State Senator Slade Blackwell (R) from Trussville was the speaker at the GBYR event. Sen. Blackwell said of the Republican Super-Majority, “We are actually doing good in Montgomery.”
Sen. Blackwell had polling data showing that the Alabama Republican Party share similar views with the people of Alabama. 70% of the people in the state believe the state of Alabama does not need to raise taxes. 81% are in favor of punishing people who abuse Medicaid. 90% favor guaranteeing a right to bar arms in state Constitution. 62% favor giving teachers a pay raise.
Blackwell said that Republicans need to do a better job of bringing people into the party. Republicans almost have a litmus test. Democrats do a better job of bringing people in to their party nationally. We are not doing enough to grow the base to win national elections.
Sen. Blackwell said, “Y’all are what drives the new Republicans.”
Blackwell asked by a show of hands if the group felt the Alabama Republican Party should support a state lottery or casino gambling. Results were mixed with most attendees electing not to raise their hands to announce their positions.
Blackwell asked about social issues including: abortion, same sex marriage, and school prayer. The audience was mostly noncommittal. Blackwell suggested that an over emphasis on social issues was possibly driving away voters in national elections.
Senator Blackwell said on his website, “Unemployment is down, exports are up to record levels, and we were recently ranked as the fourth best state to do business. Alabama is on the right track and I am excited to continue the work we’re doing to make our government smaller, more efficient, and more transparent.”
Jackie Curtiss was selected as the new Chairman by acclamation. Similarly all the officers were selected by acclamation without opposition.
Clayton Mark Turner was re-elected as Vice Chairman. Ward Henecker was selected as Secretary.
Marshall Hollis was elected to be Treasurer.
Marshall Yates was chosen to be State Committeeman.
Haley Lucido was elected as State committeewoman.
Joel Blankenship was selected as Sargent at Arms.
John Macklem was selected as County Liaison.
Dues to join the GBYR are $25 for individuals and $35 for married couples.
You must be current in your dues to be able to vote in the officer elections.
Outgoing GBYR Chairman Jimmy Entrekin has recently been appointed legal counsel for the Office of the Alabama Speaker of the House by Speaker Mike Hubbard (R) from Auburn. Entrekin is a lawyer with an established practice in Jefferson and Shelby Counties and is an experienced campaign consultant.
Next month the GBYR is having their Christmas Party. Sponsorship opportunities are still available.