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Biden to join Doug Jones for campaign event in Birmingham

Vice President Joe Biden speaks during a reception at the Naval Observatory Residence marking the 16th Anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act, in Washington, DC, September 22, 2010. Official White House Photo by David Lienemann.

By Brandon Moseley 
Alabama Political Reporter

The Doug Jones campaign announced on Wednesday that former Vice President Joe Biden will come to Alabama to headline a campaign rally with U.S. Senate Candidate Doug Jones in Birmingham later this month.

Jones said that he is honored that his friend, Biden, will headline an Oct. 3 rally for his campaign.

“We are thrilled and deeply honored to have my longtime friend Vice President Joe Biden visit the great state of Alabama to reinforce his strong support of my campaign for the U.S. Senate,” Jones said. “I have known and respected Joe Biden for almost 40 years now. He is the epitome of what we all hope public service can be.”

“I have seen Doug Jones’ dedication to civil rights and social justice,” Biden said in a statement. “From his time as U.S. Attorney prosecuting the 16th Street Baptist Church bombers to his private life as an advocate for social justice and economic empowerment, Doug Jones is a proven leader in which we can place our trust. Doug Jones will make a great U.S. Senator.”

Biden will campaign with Doug Jones on Tuesday, Oct. 3 at the Sheraton Hotel in Birmingham. The campaign will release more details about times and ticketing closer to the event.

Biden served two terms as the vice president of the United States under President Barack Obama. Biden, from Scranton, Pennsylvania, served as a U.S. senator representing Delaware for more than three decades before being tapped by Obama in 2008 to be his running mate.

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Jones served as U.S. Attorney in Birmingham beginning in 1997. Among many cases, he successfully prosecuted the KKK members responsible for killing four young girls in the 1963 Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing.

Democrats elected Doug Jones on Aug. 15 without the need for a runoff in a crowded field. Many political insiders suggest that there is no way that Jones, or any Democrat, can win a statewide Senate race. The Alabama Democratic Party has not won any statewide race since 2008, and it has not won a U.S. Senate race in Alabama since 1992, which was Sen. Richard Shelby, who switched to the Republican Party just two years later. Of the August primary voters, 72 percent chose a Republican primary ballot.

Other analysts point to the civil war that has broken out in the Alabama Republican Party in the special election. Establishment Republicans are backing U.S. Sen. Luther Strange, R-Ala., for Senate. The grassroots conservatives are backing his opponent Roy Moore.

The last year has been a bad one for national Democrats. Republican Donald Trump shocked many when he took the presidency in November, winning states that had been solidly blue for decades. Republicans held on to both the Senate and the House. Democrats vowed to fight back. But in special election after special election in red states, Republicans have been victorious and the Democratic National Committee is plagued with financial problems and a crisis in leadership. To this point, national Democrats have been reluctant to embrace Democratic Senate Nominee Doug Jones in the Alabama special election.

Jones will face Tuesday’s runoff winner in the special general election on Dec. 12, 2017.

Written By

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

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