Category: State Politics

J. Pepper Bryars: Conservatives can vote for the Alabama Republican Party if they cannot directly support Roy Moore

    Don’t want to vote for Roy Moore because of the allegations? Cannot support Doug Jones because he’s an abortion extremist? Think a write-in candidate will only help elect a Democrat? Conservatives in Alabama have a viable fourth option – voting a straight ticket. Voters will find a section for straight party voting at the top of every special election ballot handed out Tuesday. Darken the circle next to “Alabama Republican Party” and you’re done. Moore will get your vote, albeit indirectly, yet voters concerned about the allegations can walk away having supported the Republican Party’s majority in the Senate rather than the judge personally. Sure, voting a straight party ticket is a rather expedient “out” and a rationalization, but in these unprecedented times, and with the future balance of the U.S. Supreme Court in play, perhaps rationalization is the best some can hope for. It’ll then be up to Moore to earn a majority of the party’s trust before he potentially stands for re-election to a full term in less than two-years – an election that will surely draw a primary challenger. I have voted a straight Republican Party ticket since I was 20-years old and I encouraged the #nevertrump crowd to vote a straight ticket in the last presidential election, as well. Even though some conservatives had, and still have, concerns about President Donald Trump, the idea of a “President” Hillary Clinton was too horrifying for me to contemplate. That was a bit different, of course. Rationalizing…

Poll results show write-in candidate Lee Busby may be a Moore election spoiler

  The newest Emerson College poll shows Democrat Doug Jones pulling within just three percentage points of Republican Roy Moore in the Senate seat race.  The poll included write-in candidate Lee Busby who received 5 percent of the vote. Moore led the three with 49 percent support and Jones trailed close behind with 46 percent. Busby's name will not appear on the December 12 special election ballot.  Why this matters: Busby may become a Moore spoiler since his supporters in the poll largely identified themselves as Republicans, said Emerson professor Spencer Kimball in a podcast.       The details: -- The survey asked 500 “very likely” voters, “If the special election for Alabama’s U.S. Senate seat were today, for whom would you vote or lean towards voting?” -- The poll has a margin of error of 4.3 percent, so it could be even more of a dead heat than reported. -- A previous Emerson poll, taken before Busby announced his write-in campaign and immediately after allegations broke of Moore's sexual misconduct, showed Moore leading Jones by 10 percentage points (55 percent to 45 percent). -- In that poll, 28 percent of voters said The Washington Post story affected their vote, while 59 percent said it had no effect on their decision. -- A new CBS / YouGov poll has 71 percent of Republican likely voters saying the allegations against Moore are false.   Bottom line: If Busby and Jones supporters turn out come election day, it may make just enough a difference to make…

J. Pepper Bryars: Roy Moore isn’t bad for business (but he isn’t necessarily good for business either)

[caption id="attachment_50241" align="aligncenter" width="800"] (Judge Roy Moore for U.S. Senate/Facebook)[/caption]     Over the weekend NPR aired a story about how Alabama’s business community fears that Roy Moore’s likely election to the Senate could hurt the state’s economic growth, costing jobs for the very people he seeks to represent. “Roy Moore is a disaster for business and economic development. He was a disaster even before the allegations,” said Susan Pace Hamill, a business law professor at the University of Alabama. “The fear is that his presence will tip the scales, causing the business to choose somebody else.” (Side note: The report failed to mention that Hammil was the Democratic Party’s nominee in its 2010 challenge to State Rep. Bill Poole (R-Tuscaloosa), so perhaps her view is just a tad bias.) The rest of the story is nonsense, as well. “Senator” Roy Moore isn’t going to be bad for business. But then again, “Senator” Roy Moore isn’t necessarily going to be good for business, either. Here’s why: -- First and foremost, we shouldn’t base our political decisions on economics alone. Our way of life is a broad tapestry of interests, often competing. Sometimes cultural issues trump economic issues (I’d rather lose my job than lose my country). -- That said, Alabama has a strong foundation and can weather any single storm. We were just named No. 6 on an influential economic development magazine’s survey of state business climates (and we achieved that ranking while having the embarrassing “Luv Guv” at the…

Where is the Roy Moore issue going? 4 things Alabamians should watch for

[caption id="attachment_49917" align="aligncenter" width="800"] (FOXNews/YouTube)[/caption]   Many Alabamians have already judged the judge or condemned the media, and their position seems guided by how people have felt about Roy Moore since we first learned about the “Ten Commandments Judge” more than 20-years ago. You loved him ... or you hated him. So now you either believe him ... or not. The degree of that love or hate, however, may be tempered by the hatred that conservatives share for the liberal media, namely the Washington Post, and/or the fear of what electing a Democrat to the Senate could mean for the Supreme Court. Right now, insiders believe that nothing is going to change. Moore will remain on the ballot and nobody will do anything about it (even if they could). If that changes, here are some leading indicators Alabamians should watch for: More Moore accusers: The article painted the judge as someone who spent years trolling through malls picking up teenaged girls. If this was indeed the case, surely Moore would have hit-on, picked-up or dated more than the four women mentioned in the article. The dam could break and more women could share their stories, as we’ve seen in similar cases. Trial balloons floating across the Alabama sky: Lots of ideas are being circulated by insiders, from hopeless write-in candidacies to potential legal challenges. The public’s reception of those ideas will either embolden their authors or send them back to the drawing board. Elected Republicans in Alabama criticizing Moore: Most…