The hopelessly unvaccinated state is all red-- all the constitutional officers are conservative Republicans. The state Senate consists of 26 Republicans and 8 Democrats and the state House has 76 Republicans and 27 Democrats. Both U.S. senators are conservative Republicans. and the delegation to the House includes just one Democrat from a severed gerrymandered packed district-- and she's a conservative New Dem. In 2020, Alabama was all in for Trump-- 1,441,170 (62.03%) for Trump and just 849,624 (36.57%) for Biden. Exit polls showed that 72% of white voters were Trump voters and there was no suburban backlash against fascism like there was in normal states.
This year, with Richard Shelby (87) retiring, a Senate seat is up for grabs. When my college girlfriend's uncle, Walter Flowers, retired from Congress in 1978, Shelby, then a Democrat, was elected to Congress, where he served 3 terms as one of the most conservative Dems in the House, a Blue Dog 2 decades before the group was founded! In 1986 Shelby, still a Democrat, was first elected to the Senate. After nearly a decade of voting with the Republicans on key issues, he finally switched parties at the end of 1994. He's never faced any significant opposition in any of his reelection bids.
He is willing to spend millions-- $6 million at the moment, with another $4 million sitting on the side-- to help elect his former chief of staff, Katie Britt, win his seat. Trump' candidate, far right deranged insurrectionist Rep. Mo Brooks has stumbled badly, is a distant third in the latest polling and risks losing Trump's endorsement. This morning Burgess Everett and Natalie Allison gave a rundown of teh race for Politico readers. Shelby told the reporters "he’ll do what it takes to ensure that Britt emerges from the May primary with a place in a runoff," in which there are 3 main candidates. The Democrats aren't seriously contesting the election so whomever wins the Republican primary will win Shelby's seat. Like many Senate Republicans, he considers Brooks more a fascist and a fringe extremist than a Republican. Ted Cruz is one of the few Senate Republicans to back Brooks. So does the increasingly fascist-oriented Club for Growth.
Brooks’ flagging campaign and his opponents’ rise have shocked Senate Republicans, many of whom thought the pugnacious Donald Trump acolyte was the odds-on favorite as soon as he secured the former president’s endorsement in April. But Shelby’s backing of Britt after 43 years in Congress-- many spent showering Alabama with federal money-- along with Durant’s surprisingly strong campaign, has put Brooks on shaky footing.
Unless one of the candidates clears 50 percent in the May primary, there will be a runoff. And eliminating Brooks and leaving the race to Durant and Britt would amount to a “no-lose” proposition for Republicans, said Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), who serves on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s leadership team.
“People know what [Brooks] was like in the House. And I think there’s a general desire to have people that will be constructive and that we can work with. So that’s my view, and that’s probably the view of most of the conference,” Cornyn said.
Brooks’ campaign is pressing forward, banking on the congressman’s past support for overturning Trump’s 2020 election loss. Less than 24 hours after Trump’s comments skewering Brooks were made public in a Washington Examiner interview, Brooks’ campaign released a new ad Thursday showing him speaking at Trump’s Jan. 6 rally and attacking McConnell.
At nearly the same time, Brooks also went on his home-state station WERC to downplay any lingering sentiment among Trump’s base that something could still be done to overturn the election results. Brooks explained that “that shot was Jan. 6,” 2021, when 147 Republicans objected to certifying Trump’s defeat and rioters stormed the Capitol.
He advised Republicans to focus on elections in 2022 and 2024 rather than re-litigating 2020; a similar comment got him booed at an August Trump rally in Cullman, Ala. Brooks has lagged Britt in fundraising and failed to build a commanding lead in the race.
The former president publicly aired his grievances against Brooks this week as a kick in the pants for the Senate hopeful-- or “a gut check,” as a person close to Trump called it. This person said that Trump is not rushing to rescind his endorsement for Brooks, which would be a slippery slope for other Trump endorsees with lagging performances.
“I don’t think Mo’s in the strongest position, but I don’t think he’s as weak as some would make it seem,” the person said, calling some recent polling in the state “bullshit.”
Nor is Trump likely to issue a double endorsement in the Alabama race, despite some recent reports that he is considering doing so, the person said. But Britt’s backers are encouraging Trump to keep an open mind.
“He doesn’t seem happy with his first endorsement. I would encourage President Trump to be able to look at Katie and make a wise choice,” said Sen. Deb Fischer (R-NE), who supports Britt.
Brooks’ latest ad refers to McConnell as a “debt junkie” and links him to Britt, whom he calls a “RINO.” He concludes the ad: “That’s why President Trump endorses me, and why Mitch McConnell opposes us.”
Reporting yesterday for Alabama.com, Howard Koplowitz wrote that "Trump’s endorsement in bright-red Alabama is highly sought after by political candidates, but the former president’s track record has made getting his backing in the state a curse as much as it has been a blessing." Brooks' whole campaign is predicated on the Trump "complete and total endorsement," a complete and total endorsement that Trump is publicly talking about pulling.
Señor Trumpanzee "told the Washington Examiner that the congressman’s performance in the race is 'disappointing'-- especially with how Brooks told the crowd at a Trump rally in Cullman over the summer that they should move beyond the 2020 election-- and is mulling pulling the endorsement. 'I’m disappointed that he gave an inarticulate answer, and I’ll have to find out what he means,' Trump told The Examiner, referring to Brooks’ remarks at the Cullman rally last August. 'If it meant what he sounded like, I would have no problem changing [my endorsement] because when you endorse somebody, you endorse somebody based on principle. If he changed that principle, I would have no problem doing that.' Should Trump retract the endorsement, Brooks may not be in the worst company. Here’s why: Of the four major endorsements Trump has made in hotly contested races in Alabama since he was elected president, two wound up losing the race while two emerged victorious."
Trump gave Luther Strange his "complete and total endorsement" for the GOP senate primary in 2017 and he lost teh primary to child molester Roy Moore. Trump then endorsed Moore for the general and he actually lost to Democrat Doug Jones.