Republican House District 73 candidate Kenneth Paschal is running in a special election in Shelby County on Tuesday.
Paschal lives in Pelham and is retired from service in the U.S, Army. Paschal is a Black conservative and, if elected, he would be the first Black Republican elected to the Alabama House of Representatives since the 1870s.
“It is a blessing to be here,” Paschal said, while speaking to the Shelby County Republican Women on June 26. “I have been knocking on doors today.” Paschal said that “There is still a percentage that want to focus on my race.”
“The assumption is that I am a Democrat,” Paschal said when he visits voters during door knocking. “That is from both sides.”
“My prayers is that on July 13 the Lord will bless me to help win,” Paschal said. “The GOP can improve on taking control of the conversation.”
“My platform is God and country,” Paschal said. “It is imperative that we include people of color in the Republican Party. It is imperative that we put people of color in leadership.”
When Paschal qualified he faced a crowded field of GOP candidates.
“The polls had me in fifth place,” Paschal said of the GOP primary race.
“I was outspent three to one,” in the Republican primary runoff Paschal continued.
“God has prepared me for this position,” Paschal continued. “It is imperative that we elect real conservatives. I represent God and Country and the people in the district and not the special interests.”
Paschal faces a Democrat, Sheridan Black, in the special election on Tuesday.
“The Democrats are not campaigning out in public,” Paschal said. “They are pushing behind the scenes in direct messages and text messages. They did the same thing against (Russell) Bedsole in Alabaster.”
Paschal urged everyone in the district to come out and vote on Tuesday. There is also a state Senate special election that day in District 14. SD14 includes parts of Shelby, Chilton and Bibb Counties. Republican April Weaver faces Democrat Virginia Applebaum in that race, which overlaps some with HD73.
At the same Shelby County Republican Women meeting, Dr. Lou Campomenosi urged social activists to go to their local school board meeting to urge the city or county systems to ask that the board pass a resolution urging that Critical Race Theory not be taught in our public schools. Campomenosi urged that, if at all possible, the delegation that speaks before the board be composed of persons from more than just one race.
“It makes more sense to do it in a biracial way,” Campomenosi said. “Make sure that these boards of education understand what is going on.”
“This is pure racism,” Campomenosi said of Critical Race Theory.
“If there is a board of education meeting in the next two weeks take the information here and go,” he said.
Black conservative talk radio host George Williams is a former senior vice chair of the Alabama Republican Party. He also urged voters to go and support Paschal.
“Please support this man. We have not had a Black Republican elected to the House and the Senate,” Williams said. “Joe Reed and Hank Sanders have done a great job and have gotten rid of almost all of the White Democrats (in the Alabama legislature).”
Dawn Ray is a former president of the Shelby County Republican Women and is co-director of the Alabama Legislative Watchdogs.
“Kenneth Paschal ran against somebody who was funded by the BCA and prevailed so it is possible,” Ray said. “Be sure to call (the school board) in advance and be asked to be put on the agenda.”
Phillip Brown is the chairman of the Alabama Minority GOP and is Black and also urged voters to come out to the polls for Paschal.
“God is not interested in the salvation of the black race, God is not interested in the salvation of the White race, God is interested in the salvation of the human race,” Brown said. “I agree with Dr .King when he said that he is as opposed to Black supremacy as much as he is opposed to White supremacy.”
K Carl Smith is a Black author, influential conservative thought leader, and heads the Frederick Douglas Republicans.
“Stop looking outside yourself for leadership,” Smith said. “Stop looking outside of yourself for the cavalry. The cavalry ain’t coming. Whether Donald Trump comes back or not look for yourself to be the cavalry.”
Also on Tuesday, there is a state Senate special election that day in District 14. SD14 includes parts of Shelby, Chilton and Bibb Counties. Republican April Weaver faces Democrat Virginia Applebaum in that race, which overlaps some with HD73.
Weaver is a nurse and a former state representative who most recently served in the Trump administration.
The polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 7 p.m.
Matt Fridy vacated HD73 when he was elected to the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals. Cam Ward vacated SD14 when he was appointed as director of the Bureau of Pardons and Paroles.
Be sure to remember to bring a valid photo ID in order to participate in the SD14 and HD73 special elections.
The winners of each special general election will fill the remainder of the current terms and will still have to face re-election next year in order to serve a full four-year term.