By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
GARDENDALE—On Saturday, May 10 Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) addressed members of the Jefferson County Republican Party at their Straw Poll event at the Gardendale Civic Center. The Alabama Political Reporter covered the well-attended event from start to finish.
The Governor joked that he came in fourth at this event four years ago, because we didn’t buy enough barbecue lunches.” “It has been an honor to serve you, the best people in the best State in the country.”
Gov. Bentley said, “We came into office with no money. We were broke. We had to make a decision on whether we were going to raise taxes or streamline government in this State. I asked Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey to head up my committee on streamlining State government and she headed up that effort. Eventually we saved $1.1 billion a year. We also worked very hard to create jobs in this State and we have added 55,000 new jobs and more jobs are coming online.”
Gov. Bentley said, “We have added good jobs like Airbus in Mobile and Remington. Alabama believes in the Second Amendment and the Constitution and Remington wanted to be in a State like that. We’ve also implemented the largest road and bridge construction project in the history of the State of Alabama. We did all of this while having to deal with tornado damages.”
“Just last week tornados struck and have damaged 38 counties. Yesterday I was going to go to Etowah and Dekalb Counties to survey damage but could not do it because of more severe weather. Fortunately Lt Gov. Kay Ivey was already on the ground and could take my place.”
Gov. Bentley said that all office holders should care about the people we serve. If you educate the people of this State and give them the opportunities to get a job you will raise them out of poverty and they won’t need government assistance.
Bentley said that shortly after coming into office he began recruiting a wire factory in Wilcox County even though most of the people there did not for him. That is 300 jobs to the poorest county in America and will be open next week. Those jobs will transform that county.
Gov. Bentley said once we get elected for whatever office you represent, everyone, even those who did not vote for you. You do that and they may vote for you the next time.
Bentley said I am asking for you to vote for me again. I also am asking you to get your friends to vote for me. The popular Governor said, “Even people in my Church ask me, ‘Dr. Bentley are you going to run again?’”
The Alabama Governor said that we need to remind people that they need to get out and vote on June 3, and said that they need to vote for the best candidates so that we have a good slate of candidates in the fall. “We need good candidates to win so we can beat Democrats in November.” “I want to thank the Jefferson County Republican Party for putting this on today.”
Challenger Stacy Lee George also spoke at the Gardendale event. Bentley faces both George and Bob Starkey in the June 3 Republican Primary. Most political observers tell the Alabama Political Reporter that they expect the popular Republican governor to win his party primary. Bob Starkey did not attend the Gardendale event,
Governor Bentley won the Jefferson County Republican straw poll in the three way race with almost 8 percent of the votes cast.
To win a second term, Governor Bentley will also have to face a Democratic challenger on November 4. Fayette County businessman and former Major League Baseball player Kevin Bass faces former Congressman Parker Griffith in the Democratic Primary.