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Majority Leader Nathaniel Ledbetter to run for Alabama House Speaker

Current Alabama House Speaker Mac McCutcheon will not seek re-election in 2022.

Gov. Kay Ivey Press held a press conference with Alabama Dept. of Mental Health Commissioner Lynn Beshear and House Majority Leader Nathaniel Ledbetter for the announcement of Crisis Center Awards Wednesday, October 28, 2020 in Montgomery, Ala. (Governor's Office/Hal Yeager)

House Majority Leader Nathaniel Ledbetter, R-Rainsville, has announced that he is running to replace Alabama House Speaker Mac McCutcheon after McCutcheon retires next year. 

Ledbetter made the announcement in an email to House members on Tuesday.

“Working together, we restored faith and confidence in the Majority Leader’s Office, and we created a structure that has operated efficiently when vote counts are needed and debates on the floor are intense,” Ledbetter said in the email. “Moreover, I have worked hard to make every member of our caucus feel included, informed, valued, and appreciated.” 

Ledbetter, who is retired, said he plans to devote 100 percent of his time and energy to the position. Ledbetter was first elected in 2014 and was selected as majority leader in 2017. 

State Rep. Bill Poole, R-Tuscaloosa, is also running for the post. An attorney, Poole chairs the House Ways and Means Education committee and was first elected in 2010. 

“My goal as Speaker will be to collaborate with all members to set clear priorities, to make sure all voices are heard, to establish transparent processes, and then to aggressively pursue the enactment of policies related to the issues that matter the most to the citizens of our state,” Poole said in a statement.

“If the members of the State House of Representatives choose to elect me as Speaker, I will pledge to lead the House with determination, dedication, honesty and transparency as we work together to secure better paying jobs, improved education outcomes, improved health care, expanded broadband access, and more investments in innovation and technology,” Pool said. 

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McCutcheon in an email to House members on Monday announced he would not seek re-election in 2022 but would continue to remain House speaker through the 2022 election and the election of a new speaker. 

McCutcheon has served as speaker since 2016, when he replaced former Speaker Mike Hubbard, who was removed from office and convicted on several counts of ethics violations.

“This decision to not seek reelection is a result of my age, my wife and family. At the end of my current term, Deb and I will be entering our 70’s. We are both in good health and we would like to make the most of our golden years,” McCutcheon wrote. “As many of your know, I will not have idle hands but there will be more time to work in the barn and watch the sunset. I will remain active in our local community and busy checking off many ‘honey do’ items that have accumulated over the past decade.”

Written By

Eddie Burkhalter is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can email him at [email protected] or reach him via Twitter.

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Poole announced he is running for the post after Speaker Mac McCutcheon’s announcement that he plans to retire in 2022.

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