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Author Topic: AL-2: Democrats score recruitment coup with Montgomery Mayor Bobby Bright  (Read 1918 times)
Adlai Stevenson
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« on: February 26, 2008, 04:58:40 am »
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Democrats scored a major recruitment coup in the open CD-2 seat being vacated by retiring Congressman Terry Everett (R). Montgomery Mayor Bobby Bright -- a non-partisan conservative who had openly discussed seeking the seat this year as a either a Democrat or Republican -- has decided to run as a Democrat. He will make his formal announcement this week. State Representative Terry Spicer and dentist Cendie Crawley are also seeking the Dem nomination. State Senator Hari Anne Smith, State Representatives David Grimes and Jay Love, and dentist Craig Schmidtke are the announced GOP candidates. While the Republicans hold a solid advantage here, Bright's candidacy puts the seat in play. Race rating: GOP Favored.

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« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2008, 11:55:45 am »
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Note that this district's black population is about 30%.  With Obama as the nominee, black voters could make up even more of the electorate.

Bobby Bright is a solid candidate.  Meanwhile, the GOP field leaves something to be desired.  I think Sen. Harri Ann Smith has an advantage for the GOP because she has a base in the wiregrass portion of the district whereas the other candidates are from the Montgomery region. 

Against Harri Ann Smith, Bright would probably be able to combine strong Montgomery-area support with black votes and a decent showing in Wiregrass to win.

I would describe the district as lean GOP and possibly only a slight lean at this point.
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« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2008, 12:34:25 pm »
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That's an interesting point about the 30% black population. I still say lean GOP though.
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« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2008, 12:37:21 pm »
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That's an interesting point about the 30% black population. I still say lean GOP though.

Mississippi and South Carolina have comparable black populations, and it takes a hell of a lot more than high turnout in those communities to elect Democrats to federal office. This is comparable to a Senate race in one of those states, maybe it can happen, but there's strong polarization to overcome.
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« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2008, 12:50:48 pm »
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It'll be tough.  Not impossible, however, but very tough.  This ain't Northern Alabama.
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« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2008, 06:23:28 pm »
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Why would he run as a Dem when he could basically have walked into Congress had he taken the Republican ballot line?
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« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2008, 06:26:20 pm »
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Note that this district's black population is about 30%.  With Obama as the nominee, black voters could make up even more of the electorate.

Bobby Bright is a solid candidate.  Meanwhile, the GOP field leaves something to be desired.  I think Sen. Harri Ann Smith has an advantage for the GOP because she has a base in the wiregrass portion of the district whereas the other candidates are from the Montgomery region. 

Against Harri Ann Smith, Bright would probably be able to combine strong Montgomery-area support with black votes and a decent showing in Wiregrass to win.

I would describe the district as lean GOP and possibly only a slight lean at this point.
Please, I can guarentee you that Harri Ann Smith will be a member of the 111th Congress.
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« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2008, 10:22:37 pm »
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What's with dentists?
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« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2008, 01:03:16 am »
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Why would he run as a Dem when he could basically have walked into Congress had he taken the Republican ballot line?

That's what I was wondering too...
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« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2008, 02:50:19 am »
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Note that this district's black population is about 30%.  With Obama as the nominee, black voters could make up even more of the electorate.

Bobby Bright is a solid candidate.  Meanwhile, the GOP field leaves something to be desired.  I think Sen. Harri Ann Smith has an advantage for the GOP because she has a base in the wiregrass portion of the district whereas the other candidates are from the Montgomery region. 

Against Harri Ann Smith, Bright would probably be able to combine strong Montgomery-area support with black votes and a decent showing in Wiregrass to win.

I would describe the district as lean GOP and possibly only a slight lean at this point.
Please, I can guarentee you that Harri Ann Smith will be a member of the 111th Congress.

If Harri Ann Smith is the GOP nominee, Bright will have a better chance than against the others.  Word is she's somewhat of a dim bold.  Bright, meanwhile, is a very experienced politician who will be able to take advantage of the regional cleavage with her as the GOP nominee. 

Montgomery area white vote + black vote = congressman Bobby Bright.
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« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2008, 02:55:52 am »
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If he's so conservative he could just as easily run as a Republican (which he would have to be to win in this district anyway), then I don't want him. We already have a fairly safe House majority, nothing is gained by padding it with more conservatives, we now need to work on a PROGRESSIVE majority so the House can actually get things done, adding a bunch more conservative Democrats to create a House similar to the one from 93-95 accomplishes nothing.
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« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2008, 03:09:59 am »
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If he's so conservative he could just as easily run as a Republican (which he would have to be to win in this district anyway), then I don't want him. We already have a fairly safe House majority, nothing is gained by padding it with more conservatives, we now need to work on a PROGRESSIVE majority so the House can actually get things done, adding a bunch more conservative Democrats to create a House similar to the one from 93-95 accomplishes nothing.

I just hope he doesn't turn into another Rep. Rodney Alexander.  Alexander won in a December 2002 run-off in a demographically similar district.  (I called that win, btw.)  Shortly after winning, of course, he switched parties.  Oh well.  Sucks to be him--now he's stuck in the minority!

The DCCC wasnt too happy about that and actually sued Rep. Alexander.  I'm guessing the DCCC has assurances from Bright that he won't pull a similar maneuver and, besides, with Dems set to keep the majority for at least 6-10 years, I don't see any incentive.
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« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2008, 03:20:52 am »
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The worst thing about Alexander being that he switched parties and filed to run as a Republican at the last minute before filing deadline to prevent a Democratic opponent. Scummy.

Well being in the majority might explain why he'd opt to run as a Democrat. But I still don't care if he wins, he won't make a difference at this point.
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« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2008, 04:04:31 am »
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I think it will be an uphill race for Bright - AL-2 is rated 'R+13' and voted 67%-33% for Bush in 2004, and 61%-38% for him in 2000.  Obama might do a little better than Kerry in this District but I wouldn't say he was an advantage to run with in Alabama - polls show him doing quite badly against McCain. Still the black population is apparently 29.4%, and although the Hispanic population is only 1.5%, who knows, in a close race that could make all the difference.
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« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2008, 10:02:29 am »
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Yes, if he wins, he'll flip back to the Republicans the first time they retake the House.

Either that, or in 2012 the Democratic Alabama legislature redraws his district to include the minority parts of Montgomery they put in AL-3 to make it competitive when Bob Riley ran for governor.

He's going to be a voice for farm subsidies for whichever party he aligns with.
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« Reply #15 on: February 27, 2008, 04:25:49 pm »
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Yes, if he wins, he'll flip back to the Republicans the first time they retake the House.

Either that, or in 2012 the Democratic Alabama legislature redraws his district to include the minority parts of Montgomery they put in AL-3 to make it competitive when Bob Riley ran for governor.

He's going to be a voice for farm subsidies for whichever party he aligns with.

Yes, if he wins he will probably be drawn a district in 2012 that is about 40% black by extending the district accross the black belt, taking in minority parts of Mobile and then shedding off Autuga and Elmore counties as well as Houston county and most of the counties along the Florida border.  This would likely require Artur Davis to accept a somewhat whiter district, but he would still win it easily. 
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Adlai Stevenson
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« Reply #16 on: February 28, 2008, 10:24:01 am »
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Its interesting that AL-2 has come-up as a pick-up opportunity for Democrats when the seat they should really be going after in Alabama is AL-3, which has a higher black population and which has only re-elected Congressman Mike Rogers with margins just above 60% in 2004 and 2006.  AL-3 was the site of a very close open race in 2002 with current Chairman of the Alabama Democratic Party Joe Turnham being narrowly defeated by Rogers 50%-48%.  The Bush margin in AL-3 is smaller as well. 
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« Reply #17 on: February 29, 2008, 11:38:09 am »
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But AL-2 should be a safe seat. I'm not sure that the Democrats can win it, even with a star candidate.
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« Reply #18 on: February 29, 2008, 04:56:49 pm »
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But AL-2 should be a safe seat. I'm not sure that the Democrats can win it, even with a star candidate.

What are your thoughts on AL-3? 
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« Reply #19 on: February 29, 2008, 05:14:36 pm »
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But AL-2 should be a safe seat. I'm not sure that the Democrats can win it, even with a star candidate.

What are your thoughts on AL-3? 

It's not an open seat and this is the South. Basically the Democrats need to con Rogers into running for higher office. Then it would be fun.
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