Tag: Governor race

The Biggest Donors Eclipse the Rest in Gubernatorial Campaigns

Hundreds of thousands of dollars from Alabama’s richest person and a group of Tuscaloosa-based political action committees are fueling the race for governor as the campaign enters its final three months.

Incumbent Republican Gov. Kay Ivey and Democratic challenger Walt Maddox, mayor of Tuscaloosa, have gotten most of their campaign money from PACs, businesses and other groups since the campaign began last year. Ivey reported $4.97 million in cash contributions and Maddox listed $1.38 million in reports filed late last week with the Secretary of State’s Office.

Ivey’s contributions consist of 39 percent from individuals, 31 percent from PACs and 30 percent from groups and businesses. Maddox reported 44 percent from individuals, 38 percent from PACs and 18 percent from groups and businesses.

The heaviest hitters so far are a group of six PACs chaired by Michael Echols of Tuscaloosa. Together, those six PACs have given $403,400, almost one-third of his collections, to Maddox.

Read more about the people behind the biggest contributions to the candidates.

It’s Not Always About the Money (Except When It Is)

Spending the most money does not always get you the most votes, but the biggest spenders were the big winners in Tuesday’s gubernatorial primary elections.

Kay Ivey, the sitting governor and former lieutenant governor who has reported spending more than $4 million in her bid to win a full term in the top job, easily won the Republican nomination in Tuesday’s primary. Ivey handily defeated three challengers, each of whom spent less than she did.

Walt Maddox, Tuscaloosa’s mayor since 2005, bested five other contenders in Tuesday’s primary to win the Democratic nomination without a runoff. He has reported spending more than $827,000, the highest amount in the Democratic gubernatorial primary field.

In all, about $10 million has been spent on the governor’s race so far.

Ivey’s support came from far and wide. She led the GOP field in 61 counties, while Maddox took a deep dive in the state’s most populous counties on the Democratic side. Read more.

BirminghamWatch covered results of this week’s primary elections from the top of the ballot to the bottom. Read the stories:

Ivey and Maddox Win Nominations, Will Go Head-to-Head in November
Two Jefferson County Commissioners Going to a Runoff in Fight to Keep Their Posts
Merrill Snags SOS Nomination, AG Race Going to a Runoff After Day of Light Voting
With Superintendent’s Help, JefCoEd President Re-Elected in Hotly Contested Race
Incumbents Prevail in Legislative Primaries; Others Face Opposition in General Election
Jefferson County Court Races
Shelby County Vote Results

Ivey and Maddox Win Nominations, Will Go Head-to-Head in November

Playing it safe with a low-key campaign, Gov. Kay Ivey rolled over Republican Party opponents to cruise to victory in the Republican Party primary gubernatorial election today. She will face Democratic Party primary winner Walt Maddox in the November general election. Maddox, mayor of Tuscaloosa, also won without a runoff.

At about 10 p.m., with 50 of 67 precincts reporting, Ivey had 55.84 of the vote, with her strongest challenger, Tommy Battle, at 26.60 percent. Maddox had 51.62 percent of the vote to Sue Bell Cobb’s 29.24 percent.

In her victory speech, Ivey touted economic achievements made in the state in the past year and said, “But all these success, y’all, I say are just a good start ‘cause I’m not done yet.”
Ivey, former lieutenant governor, was elevated to governor following the 2017 resignation of Gov. Robert Bentley, whose leadership was plagued with scandals. Her closest competition came from Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle. Evangelist Scott Dawson of Birmingham and Mobile State Sen. Bill Hightower were left far behind.

Ivey, 73, said she was a steadying influence on state government following the tumultuous years of Bentley leadership. She took advantage of her incumbency to avoid most open debates, forged a significant lead in campaign contributions, and emphasized gun rights, education and job growth. She also banned lobbyists from appointment to the executive branch of government.

Maddox, in his first statewide political campaign, showed he could build an effective organization and overcome the name recognition of his main opponent, former Alabama Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb of Montgomery. Cobb’s campaign was dogged by her hire of a registered sex offender as a field representative, by her resignation as chief justice, and by her endorsement of former US Sen. Jeff Sessions for US attorney general.

Maddox, 45, took full advantage of his leadership in rebuilding Tuscaloosa following the devasting tornadoes of 2011. He prioritized workforce education and training, called for a statewide lottery to help finance public education, and said he would expand Alabama’s Medicaid program. Prior to his first election as mayor in 2005, Maddox was director of personnel for Tuscaloosa City Schools.

Ivey Stretches out Her Lead in Fundraising for Governor’s Race

Gov. Kay Ivey is closing in on the $4 million mark in contributions to her campaign to win the Republican nomination for governor, according to financial reports filed this week.

Ivey raised $143,515 between May 12 and May 18, pushing her total for the campaign to $3.93 million, according her new weekly report.

Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle is a distant second in the battle for campaign cash. He reported contributions of $103,825 for the week, raising his total to $2.28 million.

Ivey, Battle, state Sen. Bill Hightower of Mobile and Birmingham evangelist Scott Dawson are vying for the GOP nomination. The winner of the June 5 Republican primary will face the winner of the Democratic primary in the November general election. Read more.

Candidates for Governor Pitch Ideas During PARCA Roundtable Forum

Six candidates vying to be the next governor of Alabama sat down for interviews with professors and professionals from across the state Wednesday night during a forum sponsored by the Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama.

Three Republican candidates – Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle, Evangelist Scott Dawson and state Sen. Bill Hightower – and three Democratic candidates – former state Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb, former state Rep. James Fields and Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox – participated in the forum, held at Woodrow Hall in Birmingham’s Woodlawn community. Gov. Kay Ivey, who also is seeking the Republican nomination in the June 5 primary, was invited to the forum, said PARCA director of communications Marci Smith, but the governor declined.

Organized by the PARCA Roundtable group of young professionals, the forum featured 12-minute, one-on-one interviews with each candidate by interviewers who belong to or were selected by the Roundtable. After the interviews, the candidates took turns answering questions submitted by the audience. Read more.

Republicans in Governor Race Eclipse Democrats in Spending

Gov. Kay Ivey has collected almost $100,000 this month for her campaign for governor, bringing her total to $3.78 million since the race for the June 5 Republican primary began last year.

In a report filed Monday with the Secretary of State’s office, Ivey said she raised $99,303 during the period of May 1-11. She has spent $2.52 million, leaving a balance of $1.27 million in her account. Read more.