GOP Senate candidates participated in a forum last week in Gulf Shores before state retirees at the ARSEA/APEAL Convention.
Candidates Stanley Adair, John Merrill, and Arnold Mooney all participated in the forum.
Congressman Bradley Byrne, R-Montrose, was detained by business in D.C.; but addressed the retirees via video. Auburn Football Coach Tommy Tuberville also joined the group, but minutes too late to participate in the forum.
Former Chief Justice Roy Moore is also a candidate for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate.
Stanley Adair is a businessman from Haleyville, Alabama.
“We sure need to do some changing in Washington,” Adair said. “We need to put someone in to stand up to those crazies in Washington. We have got some of them trying to impeach the President.”
John Merrill is the Alabama secretary of state. Merrill grew up in rural Cleburne County and lives in Tuscaloosa.
“I will help the President build the border wall,” Merrill promised. “We also need comprehensive immigration reform.” We need workers for the construction, infrastructure, hospitality, and agriculture industries. “We need to make sure that those people who do not need to be here are sent back.”
“We need somebody who will push back against the agenda being pushed by Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and Chuck Schumer,” Merrill said.
Congressman Bradley Byrne said, “I am in Washington voting on some of the issues which are very important for us.”
“We need someone who will fight for us, someone who has experience in cleaning up a swamp.”
Arnold Mooney is a member of the Alabama House of Representatives. Mooney grew up in Montgomery and is from north Shelby County.
“Recent events have caused us to find some new hope,” Mooney said. “President Trump, he has brought back an economy that liberals and crazy people said would never come back. He has repealed the death tax and the waters of the U.S. rule.”
“I am running for what you love and I love our children and grandchildren,” Mooney said.
“Things are moving forward now, but we still have problems in this country,” Adair said. “Congress only has a 13 percent approval rate. Something is wrong with our Congress today. Look at what they are trying to do President Trump tonight.”
Merrill said that as Secretary of State Alabama has set new state records for both voter registration and voter participation. 96 percent of all eligible Black Alabamians are registered to vote and 91 percent of eligible Whites.
“We have removed over 800,000 names from the voter rolls because they have moved away, passed away, or have been put away.” Merrill said. “We have the highest level of integrity in the voter rolls in the history of the state.”
Merrill said that they have been criticized for the state voter ID requirement.
“Those people are entitled to their own opinions, but not to their own facts. All we have done is make it easy to vote but hard to cheat,” Merrill explained.
“If we don’t do something what we leave will not be a legacy of freedom,” Mooney said. “There are no Democrats left. They have all left that party to people who do not believe in anything that this country was founded on.”
“We are $22 trillion in debt,” Adair said. “We have got to stop some of this silliness in Washington.”
“Trump is about building the most powerful militaries in the world and I support that,” Adair added.
“We can take our country back and give it to the people of this state and this nation,” Merrill said.
“People are crossing that border in chain immigration,” Mooney said. “It is absurd. It is illegal.”
“We need merit based immigration,” Mooney explained.
Adair said that as a businessman you don’t just take of yourself and your family, but you have to make sure that all of your employees get a check every week.”
Merrill said that as Secretary of State he has saved taxpayers money, reduced staff thirty percent, and reduced the wait time on business filings from seven to nine month to same day.
“We are not operating at the speed of government anymore, but the speed of business,” Merrill said.
Mooney said that illegal immigration is costing us $250 billion a year. It is costing too much and it is all being paid for with deficit spending.
“The national debt is a crying shame,” Mooney said. “We can barely pay the interest on the debt.”
“We cannot continue to send the same folks to Washington and expect different results,” Adair said. “America needs you and needs your vote.”
Merrill said that Democrats are not promoting the “Principles of the founders of this country.”
Mooney said that he met his wife at a Bible study in Montgomery, before moving to Shelby County and embarking on an over 40-year career in commercial real estate.
“We have been blessed to be a part of Montgomery and North Shelby,” Mooney said.
ARSEA/APPEAL hopes to have the eventual Republican nominee and incumbent Senator Doug Jones (D) speak at the convention next year before the 2020 general election on November 3.
The major party primary is March 3.
Slow absentee voting in Tuscaloosa sparks outrage, possible legal action
Among the issues were incredibly long lines that left some voters waiting more than five hours and an inefficient process that managed to take in fewer than 100 absentee ballots in six hours.
Long lines and slow absentee ballot processing in Tuscaloosa County have left voters outraged and incumbent Sen. Doug Jones’s campaign threatening legal action.
On Wednesday, Jones’s campaign attorney, Adam Plant, sent a letter to Tuscaloosa County Circuit Clerk Magaria Bobo, outlining a number of issues with ongoing absentee voting and promising to take legal action if Bobo doesn’t improve the process on the final day, Friday. Among the issues documented by Plant were incredibly long lines that left some voters waiting more than five hours and an inefficient process that managed to take in fewer than 100 absentee ballots in six hours.
Additionally, Plant noted that Bobo has hired her family members to help process absentee ballots and at least one family member had made disparaging remarks on social media about voters.
“You and those acting on your behalf are suppressing the vote of qualified Alabama voters,” Plant wrote in the letter. “If you are unable or unwilling to execute your duties competently, and allow Tuscaloosa voters to exercise their voting rights without undue burdens, we will take further action.”
In an interview with the Montgomery Advertiser on Wednesday, Bobo noted that her office had received more than 13,000 requests for absentee ballots — a remarkable uptick from the 3,000 or so her office usually receives — and there had been problems in managing that number of ballots while also adhering to social distancing guidelines within the office.
However, as Plant’s letter notes, the massive increase in absentee ballots for this election shouldn’t have been a surprise. Also, Secretary of State John Merrill had made additional funds available to absentee managers to facilitate hiring extra staff, purchasing additional computers and staying open for longer hours to accommodate the anticipated increase.
In a press release on Wednesday, the Alabama Democratic Party criticized Bobo and her family members, and the release included screenshots of Facebook posts from Bobo’s daughter lashing out at voters who complained about the long wait times.
“No voter should have to wait in line for hours to exercise their rights,” said ADP executive director Wade Perry. “We should leverage every tool we have to make voting easier, not harder. Also, it should go without saying that election workers should not insult the very people they are employed to serve. If Ms. Bobo is incapable of processing voters quickly, someone else needs to do the job.”
Jones campaign calls Tuberville a “coward” after no-show at Auburn forum
“Tuberville is hiding because he knows that on every front — policy, experience, character, competence — he loses to Doug Jones. Hands down,” Jones’s campaign said.
There are only four days left before election day, and incumbent Democratic Sen. Doug Jones’s re-election campaign is slamming Republican challenger Tommy Tuberville, accusing him of “hiding” and calling him a “coward.”
On Wednesday, Jones addressed an Auburn University forum. Tuberville did not attend.
“Tonight, the College Democrats and College Republicans at Auburn University co-hosted a debate between Doug Jones and Tommy Tuberville, offering students a chance to ask the candidates about the issues that matter most to Alabama,” the Jones campaign said in an email to supporters. “But Tuberville never showed up – he’s too scared to face Doug… even on his own home turf. Tuberville has repeatedly refused to debate Doug Jones. He’s consistently refused to be interviewed by the press. He’s refused to tell Alabama the truth about who and what they’re voting for – and it’s clear why.”
“Tuberville is hiding because he knows that on every front — policy, experience, character, competence — he loses to Doug Jones. Hands down,” the campaign continued. “If he won’t tell the truth, we will. Tuberville expects to win this race off of his blind allegiance to the President and his party affiliation. But Alabamians know better.”
“People deserve to know who they’re really voting for if they vote for Tuberville: someone who … won’t protect our health care, doesn’t believe in science, has no idea what the Voting Rights Act is, and doesn’t care about the lives and livelihoods of Alabamians,” the Jones campaign concluded. “Alabama will never elect a coward. Pitch in now and help us spread the truth about the man hiding behind the ballot.”
“I am disappointed that Tommy Tuberville is not here,” Jones said. “I think it is important that people see two candidates side by side answering the same questions.”
Tuberville meanwhile is canvassing the state, speaking to rallies and Republican groups to turn out the Republican vote for himself and President Donald Trump. Tuberville spoke at Freedom Fest in Madison County on Thursday and at the Trump Truck Parade rally in Phenix City.
“It’s time Alabama had a U.S. senator who represents our conservative beliefs and traditional values,” Tuberville said in Phenix City. “It’s time Alabama had a U.S. senator who supports the Second Amendment, the right to life, and putting God back in the classroom.”
Polling consistently shows Tuberville with a commanding lead over Jones. Real Clear Politics lists the race on their current board as a likely Republican win. FiveThirtyEight’s election model gives Tuberville a 79 percent chance of defeating Jones.
Tuberville says election is about “the American dream”
“It is not about me. It is not about Biden or Jones. It is about the American dream. They are trying to take it away from us,” Tuberville claimed.
Thursday, Tommy Tuberville spoke at Freedom Fest asking Madison County voters to support him and re-elect Donald J. Trump Tuesday.
The former Auburn University head football Coach told the estimated crowd of 350 that, “It is great to be here. This has been a lot of fun for me. Two years ago, my wife and I started to pray on whether or not to run. When we decided to run, she said don’t come back until you win.”
“This is a very serious election,” Tuberville said. “This is not about Donald Trump. It is not about me. It is not about Biden or Jones. It is about the American dream. They are trying to take it away from us.”
“I always told my players this: this country gives you the opportunity to fail and if you fail you get back up and try again,” Tuberville said. “When I was growing up in Arkansas I wanted to be a college football coach. People in high school laughed at me for it and people in college. It takes perseverance.”
Tuberville said that this country gives you the opportunity to succeed, more so than any other country in the world. Most of the rest of the world is socialist.
Tuberville warned that the other side is trying to turn America into a socialist country.
“We are not going to let them ruin this country,” Tuberville vowed.
The 2020 Madison County GOP Freedom Fest was held at the brand new Toyota Field, the new home of the Huntsville Trash Pandas minor league baseball team.
Tuberville praised President Trump whom “I have gotten to know through all of this and we have become friends. He never slows down; and he is sharp as a tack.”
Tuberville said that the President once called him at 2:30 in the morning, “He said sleep is overrated.”
To protect the American dream we need to vote on Tuesday to keep the Senate and get Donald Trump re-elected.”
Tuberville said that he has spoken with, “A lot of people who as nervous as I am about Tuesday.” Coach Tuberville, who is being outspent, urged the crowd to ignore all of the television ads by his opponent, incumbent Senator Doug Jones (D).
Tuberville vowed to defend the Second Amendment if elected, “They ain’t getting my guns….or your guns.”
“We need to get God back in our schools and teach values again,” Tuberville stated. “The other side does not talk about values and morals.”
We are not going to allow them to tear down our country,” Tuberville said. “God will not allow them.”
“We are going to get God back in our country like it is supposed to be,” Tuberville said.
Coach Tuberville was introduced to the crowd by State Senator Clay Scofield (R-Guntersville).
Scofield said that he “is ready to send Doug Jones back to California.”
“Yes I know he is actually from here; but he sure votes like California. He certainly doesn’t vote like the vast majority of the people of Alabama want him to vote.”
Scofield called Tuberville is “A fighter” who will stand up for the values of the people of Alabama.
Congressman Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) said, “This is the most important election of my lifetime.”
“Do we believe in freedom and liberty or do we believe in socialism?” Brooks said. “We need to beat them like a drum.”
The general election is on Tuesday. You must bring a valid photo ID with you to your assigned polling place in order to participate.
Secretary of State John H. Merrill predicted that the state would have record participation on Tuesday.
Aderholt receives prestigious Guardian of Small Business Award
The NFIB is the nation’s leading small business advocacy organization and the Guardian of Small Business Award is its most prestigious legislative recognition.
Congressman Robert Aderholt, R-Alabama, has been awarded the prestigious Guardian of Small Business Award by the National Federation of Independent Businesses. While accepting the award, Aderholt said: “Small businesses are the lifeblood of the American economy.”
The NFIB is the nation’s leading small business advocacy organization and the Guardian of Small Business Award is its most prestigious legislative recognition.
NFIB State Director Rosemary Elebash presented the award to Aderholt at a ceremony at NorthRidge Fitness, an NFIB member business in Northport owned by Mary Cartee.
“NFIB presents its Guardian of Small Business Award to lawmakers who small businesses can depend on,” Elebash said. “Congressman Aderholt has supported Alabama’s job creators on the issues that our members are concerned about and have proven themselves to be real champions for small business.”
NFIB Vice President of Federal Government Relations Kevin Kuhlman said, “Our policy positions are driven by our members, and we report NFIB Key Votes back to our membership. We are proud to recognize the elected officials from the 116th Congress who earned this distinction by taking pro-small business votes supporting financial assistance programs and tax relief and opposing increased labor costs.”
“Small businesses are the lifeblood of the American economy,” Aderholt said. “It’s where new innovations and ideas are developed and nurtured. In fact, almost every large business in America started out as a small business. It’s both my pleasure and my duty to work in Congress to protect small businesses. We depend on these entrepreneurs and that’s why I will always fight for them.”
The National Federation of Independent Business’s Guardian of Small Business Award is reserved for only those lawmakers who vote consistently with small business on the key issues identified by small business owners. Those who voted with small business on key issues 70 percent or more of the time during the 116th Congress earned the NFIB Guardian of Small Business Award.
Alabama Congress members Bradley Byrne, Martha Roby, Mike Rogers, Gary Palmer, Mo Brooks and Sen. Richard Shelby were also NFIB Guardian of Small Business Award recipients from the 116th Congress.
NFIB informs lawmakers in advance what votes will be considered NFIB Key Votes and asks lawmakers to support the consensus views of its members. Congress members are also reminded that the results of how they vote will be reported back to the NFIB membership.
Aderholt is serving in his 12th term representing Alabama’s 4th Congressional District. He faces a challenge in Tuesday’s general election from Democratic candidate Rick Neighbors.
The polls will open at 7 a.m. and close at 7 p.m.