Category: 2017 U.S. Senate Race

Almost $50 Million Spent in Alabama’s U.S. Special Senate Election

Candidates and independent committees raised more than $49 million last year for Alabama’s U.S. Senate special election, won by Democrat Doug Jones.

Financial reports posted this week by the Federal Election Commission show Jones with $22.05 million in contributions to his campaign during 2017, compared to $6.15 million for Republican Roy Moore. Those reports include money raised by Jones for the Democratic primary in August and the general election on Dec. 5, and by Moore for the Republican primary, GOP runoff and general election.

In addition, independent committees, known as Super PACs, reported spending $2.37 million in support of Jones and $1.24 million in opposition to him. Super PACs spent $158,464 in support of Moore and $5.19 million in efforts to defeat him. Read more.

Doug Jones Sworn-In to U.S. Senate, Becomes First Alabama Democrat in the Senate Since ’94

WASHINGTON – Doug Jones took the oath of office as Alabama’s first Democratic U.S. senator in a quarter-century Wednesday, narrowing the Republican majority in the Senate to 51-49.

“I am humbled and honored to stand here today, chosen by the people of Alabama to represent our state in this historic institution,” Jones said. “I will work every day to make sure I hear their voices and that their voices are heard in Washington. It is time to come together and rebuild the trust we need to find common ground and expand opportunity for all.”

Jones is widely seen as a Democrat who will challenge President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans in their efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, fight increases in the minimum wage and oppose abortion rights.
With Jones in the Senate, GOP success in repealing Obamacare becomes much less likely, and if just two Republicans vote with Democrats, Trump nominees or budget measures would be defeated. Read more.

From Gardendale to Syria: BirminghamWatch Reprises Its Most Interesting Stories of 2017

BirminghamWatch stepped out of the mainstream in 2017 to give you stories that didn’t just recap the news, but also explained how the news was affecting our culture and the people in it.

BW has followed, and continues to follow, arguments for and against Gardendale’s attempts to break away from the county and form its own school system. It has brought you stories of immigrants who have made Alabama their home, of the state’s attempts to improve student performance regardless of high poverty rates in schools, and of the effect the state’s budget decisions are having on the environment.

2017 also was a year of elections, from the culmination of the presidential election with the inauguration of President Donald Trump, to the Birmingham city elections, to the U.S. Senate special election that attracted national attention. BirminghamWatch worked to give voters the information they needed before going to the polls, in addition to delivering that something extra that helped explain the issues, the politics and the ramifications of the elections.

We hope you’ve enjoyed reading BirminghamWatch in 2017, and please continue reading to see what we have in store for 2018! Read more.

Jones Certified Winner of Alabama Senate Seat Despite Moore’s Objections

State officials certified the election of Doug Jones to the U.S. Senate Thursday despite a last-minute legal attempt by Jones’ opponent, Roy Moore, to stop the process.

According to the certified vote tally Jones won with 673,896 votes, 49.97 percent of the vote, over Moore’s 651,972 votes, 48.34 percent — a margin of victory of 21,924 votes, or 1.63 percent. Of the 22,852 write-in votes counted, Jones received 18 and Moore received 14.

Compared to the unofficial vote count, Jones gained 2,745 votes, while Moore gained 1,536 votes.

“I’m looking forward to going to work for the people of Alabama in the new year,” Jones said in a statement after the certification. Read more.

Super PACs Wield Millions to Elect and to Defeat Senate Candidates

Independent committees aligned with Republicans and Democrats spent almost $7 million this year on television advertisements and other efforts to defeat Roy Moore in his bid to become Alabama’s junior U.S. senator.

Democrat Doug Jones, who defeated Moore, was the target of almost $2.8 million in spending from such groups, according to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.

In all, records show the Super PACs spent almost $20 million working for and against particular candidates. That’s in addition to the millions candidates raised and spent on their own campaigns. Read more.

Jones Doubles Moore’s Campaign Warchest With Help of Democratic Fundraising Group

Democrat Doug Jones raised about twice as much money for his winning U.S. Senate campaign as his Republican opponent collected, with the vast majority of the money flowing through an organization that helps Democratic candidates raise funds.

Jones’ final report to the Federal Election Commission showed contributions totaling $11.71 million during 2017. Roy Moore, the Republican candidate and former Alabama chief justice, raised $5,152,464.

The vast majority of the money collected by Jones – $9.57 million – was funneled into his campaign through ActBlue. The organization, which allows contributors to make donations to specific candidates via its website, helped all of the Democrats who ran for the Senate in 2016 raise money and has funneled $1.95 billion to Democratic and progressive candidates since 2004. Read more.

Family and Friends Nationwide Want to Know: What Do Alabamians Think About the Jones-Moore Campaign

As the voting numbers started to come in Tuesday night, so did calls, texts, and social media posts to Alabama residents from their out-of-state friends, family and acquaintances.

The fervor of the race between Doug Jones and Roy Moore in the special Senate election had captured the attention of the entire country.

Alabamians found themselves cast in the role of political analysts even before election night.

Early in the race, buzz seemed to be about the race’s effect on the balance of power in the U.S. Senate and candidates’ controversial statements. The national conversation exploded after the Washington Post published a story alleging sexual misconduct on the part of Republican candidate Roy Moore. National and international news outlets flocked to Alabama to cover the candidates.

Just as it happens when a big football game is played or a tornado touches down, everyday people became the micro-level information headquarters for their friends and family. Read more.

Beware the Stampede! News Media From Across the Globe Flocked to Alabama for Special Senate Election.

Moore Issues Video Statement Saying He Will Continue to Fight for the U.S. Senate Seat

Roy Moore said again Thursday that he would not concede the U.S. Senate election, issuing a video statement in which he said the race was too close, some ballots were still out, and he believed “the heart and soul of our country is at stake” in the election.

Vote tallies from Tuesday showed Doug Jones beating Moore by about 20,000 votes, but the vote will not be certified until Dec. 26 to Jan. 3.

You can watch the 4:46 video in full here.