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Coleman seeks clarification on qualifying deadline in ballot bid

Coleman is hoping to get on the ballot in the Republican primary for Alabama’s 2nd Congressional District.

Alabama trucker Jeff Coleman is calling on Attorney General Steve Marshall and Secretary of State John Merrill to “seek clarification” from the U.S. Supreme Court on the qualifying deadline for the upcoming Republican primary.

On Jan. 24, a federal court threw out Alabama’s Congressional District lines and extended filing to Feb.11 to allow more time for the district lines to be finalized and more time for prospective candidates to review them. After the Supreme Court ruled on the lines, Coleman filed for Congress before the new deadline.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 7 stopped the lower court’s order from going into effect while waiting to hear arguments on the case.

“The simple fact is voters deserve a choice, but right now a political machine is doing everything they can to protect the insiders and namby pamby politicians who are driving America into a ditch,” said Coleman. “That’s why I am asking Secretary Merrill and General Marshall to do what’s right by the people, to stand up to political cronyism and ask the U.S. Supreme Court to clarify this matter so voters have a real choice in this upcoming election.”

Following a request from Jeff Coleman, on Friday, a lower court declined to clarify the deadline for filing for Congress and said Mr. Coleman can’t be a party to the case.

Coleman hand-delivered a letter to Marshall and Merrill requesting they seek clarification as parties to the case. 

“We refuse to be steamrolled by the same type of political cronyism that is hurting our Alabama families,” Coleman said. “This is about letting the people decide between the same old corrupt career politicians or an Alabama Tough Trucker with a proven track record of job creation and standing up for what’s right.”

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In a statement released by the Secretary of State’s office on Feb. 8, Merrill said the decision on whether to allow candidates on the ballot who qualified during the extension would be left up to the parties.

“Any candidate that qualified between January 28 and February 7 (prior to the stay being granted) was qualified to be on the ballot,” Merrill said. “Anyone attempting to qualify after the stay was granted was time-barred by January 28 cutoff. The question of whether or not the Feb. 11 qualifying cutoff could still be followed is a party decision of which this office has no opinion.

“The parties will certify their candidates to us on March 9. We will accept what is certified to us by the parties.”

Coleman is seeking election to Alabama’s 2nd Congressional District seat, currently occupied by Republican Barry Moore. Moore is also seeking reelection to the seat. Moore and Coleman faced off in the Republican primary runoff in 2020, with Moore winning a comfortable 60 percent of the vote. 

Although Coleman is currently not on the ballot, that isn’t keeping him off the campaign trail.

The Jeff Coleman for Congress “Alabama Tough” Air Horn Truck Tour will be touring the district and asking citizens to sign a “stop socialism” wall. 

Jacob Holmes is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can reach him at [email protected]

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