By Lee Hedgepeth
Alabama Political Reporter
Will Brooke, one of the top GOP candidates for the U.S. House seat representing Alabama’s Sixth Congressional District, does not currently live within the district’s boundaries.
Brooke, who lives in Birmingham, has said, though, that he is in the process of moving into AL-6. In fact, his current home, which is in Birmingham’s Redmont neighborhood in AL-7, has been put on the real estate market for $2.2 million.
Brooke has been quick to point out that until the redistricting due to the 2010 census, his home was – and always has been – in the district for which he is running. Beginning in 2011, however, when the redistricting took effect, Brooke’s Lanark Road home ended up a few hundred feet from the district’s outer edge.
“The only reason we’re not in the district today is because in redistricting in 2011 the line was moved a hundred yards away from our house,” the candidate has said.
“Every house we’ve ever bought has been in the district, including the one we are in now. Our children were all educated in the district.”
Though Brooke did file his original candidacy paperwork with the Lanark Road address and said he would stay in AL-7, which is represented by Rep. Terri Sewell, a Democrat, he has now said that after further consideration, he believes a move is the right choice.
“It didn’t feel right to ask other people to vote for me if I couldn’t vote for myself.”
The decision wasn’t any easy one though, Brooke has said, pointing to the family’s history in the home.
“We love that house,” Brooke has said. “Our daughter was married there.”
Brooke is facing off with six other Republican in the June 3rd primary, including Rep. Paul DeMarco, Sen. Scott Beason, Gary Palmer, Dr. Chad Mathis, Tom Vigneulle, and Robert Shattuck. The seat was vacated by retiring Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Vestavia Hills.
So far, despite his being a constituent of AL-7, Brooke has managed to raise an enormous amount of campaign cash, coming in second behind Rep. Paul DeMarco, who has a pretty solid fundraising lead.
Below are the current fundraising totals from the AL-6 GOP primary, listed from greatest to least:
Rep. Paul Demarco – $850,949
Will Brooke – $489,297
Gary Palmer – $404,995
Dr. Chad Mathis – $370,211
Tom Vigneulle – $34,537
Sen. Scott Beason – $15,925
Robert Shattuck – $0
To be clear, there is no Federal law disallowing candidates to run for election to represent a district in which they do not reside.