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Butler Qualifies: Faces Primary Opponent

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Rainbow City Republican Mack Butler qualified to run for re-election, like most Republican legislators, on Wednesday when Alabama Republican Party staffers visited the capital city to allow legislators the chance to qualify without having to make the drive up to Alabama Republican Headquarter in the Birmingham/Hoover area.

Rep. Mack Butler announced on Facebook, “The Alabama Republican Party came to Montgomery today to qualify candidates. I proudly qualified to be on the 2014 ballot for State House District 30!”  Butler’s House District 30 covers parts of Etowah and St. Clair Counties.

Butler faces a Republican challenger: Ashville Mayor Robert McKay.

The Alabama Republican Party website claims that Suzelle Josey is also running against Butler for House District 30.  ‘The Alabama Political Reporter’ long ago reported that Suzelle Josey (and her website also confirms this) is running for Alabama Senate District 30, not House District 30.  ‘The Alabama Political Reporter’ will get clarification on this matter in coming days.

McKay is serving in his fourth term as mayor of Ashville. Before that he served on the Ashville City Council.

McKay told ‘The St. Clair Times,’ “This legislative seat represents several small municipalities in St. Clair County and Etowah County. I know the needs of small towns and cities, and I believe I would be an asset to them.”  “The people who know me best have elected me seven times.”  “I have friends not only in Ashville, but Etowah County as well. I see an opportunity to win that legislative seat.”

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Alabama State Representative Mack Butler grew up in Gadsden and attended public schools in Gadsden; where he excelled in the Electrical Training program offered by the Area Career Tech Center and was winner of the VICA competition his senior year. After graduation he continued his studies at Alabama Technical College (now, Gadsden State Community College) where he received an Associates Degree in Electrical Engineering Technology.

While still a college student, Mack passed the Electrical Journeyman’s Competency test and at 21 passed Alabama’s rigorous Master Electrician examination. Shortly thereafter, he and wife, Connie founded Butler Electrical Contractors (BEC), which today has over 30 employees.  BEC specializes in commercial and industrial building projects and works in a multi-county area of north Alabama.

In 2002, Mack formed Butler Properties, LLC in which he invests and develops commercial and residential properties in Alabama, Florida and Tennessee. At present, there are 100 properties in his portfolio.

Mack’s political career began when he was asked to serve as president of the PTO at his child’s elementary school. He followed that as president of the PTO at their middle school. This work gave him a deep interest in education and resulted in his decision to become a candidate for the Etowah County School Board.

Mack was elected to two six year terms on the school board, representing the cities of Rainbow City and Southside. He has served two terms as president of the ECBOE.  Governor Riley (R) appointed Mack to the Alabama Public Library Executive Board where he served as chairman. Later, he was appointed to a term on the Alabama Textbook Committee. Mack also served on the state’s Electrical Contractors Board which oversees the licensing of electricians.

Mack became a member of the Etowah Co Republican Executive Committee and the State Republican Executive committee. In 2005 and 2007, he was elected chairman of the Etowah County Republican party and was an alternate delegate to the National Republican Convention in 2004. In 2008, Mack was elected as a delegate to the national convention.

Butler through his interest in law enforcement and friendship with Etowah County Sheriff Todd Entrekin became a reserve deputy in 2006. In 2009 he graduated with honors from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Academy. He is now an APOST certified law enforcement officer with full arrest powers.

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Mack and his wife, Connie, are parents of four children and worship at Cross Point Baptist Church.

Alabama House District 30 was previously held by Republican Representative Blaine Galliher (R), who was re-elected in 2010.  Galliher vacated the seat to accept a job as Legislative Director for Governor Robert Bentley’s (R) Administration.  Mack Butler was elected in a special election.

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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