Tri-City Ledger -

By Joe Thomas
Ledger Editor 

No excitement on March elections

 

January 2, 2020



We enter 2020 as an election year but for some reason I don't feel the excitement. In about 2 months Alabama voters will be going to the polls to vote in the 2020 primary elections. That date is March 3. Florida's primary elections will be held on March 17.

What happened to June primaries? My bet is that the people in Alabama wanted to be ahead of the curve in the presidential election cycle. Many times after a Super Tuesday in March the presidential candidates had been set. Alabama wanted to be a player, but deep down, we are not a player and no presidential candidate is going to spend significant money in this state – especially in 2020.

President Trump doesn't have to spend money in Alabama because he will win by a landslide. Whoever the Democratic nominee is (my bet is Joe Biden unless Hilary jumps in at the last minute) won't spend any money in Alabama because they know they will get zero electoral votes from Alabama in November.

We moved the primary up to become a player, but we're not a player. Let's go back to June. We wanted to be like Iowa and New Hampshire, but we're not and we need to realize that fact. I'd love to own a newspaper in Iowa and get all the advertising dollars candidates will spend in that state to win that caucus vote.

In many other election years, by now we'd see a lot of political signs lining the roads – vote for me.

But when Escambia County voters go to the polls on March 3 they will not vote for a single local candidate. Those running on the Republican and Democratic ticket are unopposed. That's why there is no excitement, no political signs.

I normally go to the judge of probate's office on election night to get first-hand election results. I may not this year, but on second thought, I probably will for no other reason than to eat some pizza paid for by Doug Agerton. For you that don't know, his mother

served better food on election night. But times have changed.

I haven't seen the complete ballot for the March 3 primary that we will be involved in, but I can tell you without any local elections on the ballot, voter turnout may not even reach the teens.

We will be voting for a U.S. Senator and we will be voting for someone to take Bradley Byrne's place in the U.S. House of Representatives. I really don't know who's running for the House seat other than Jerry Carl, who showed up in Brewton a few weeks ago. So at this point, he's got my vote on that effort alone. The man shook my hand and asked me for his vote. Nobody else has done that.

The first vote I ever cast for governor was for Fob James when he ran the first time as a Democrat. I met him crossing the quad at the University of Alabama and he shook my hand and asked me to vote for him. I did.

The primary for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate is the bell cow on Alabama's March 3 ballot and is a bell cow on the Escambia County ballot. I predict Byrne will carry Escambia. I've been wrong before and I watched in shock as Escambia gave Roy Moore

the nod a few years ago.

Democrat Doug Jones has no chance unless

the Republicans nominate Moore. I wouldn't be surprised if many Democrat voters vote for Moore on March 3. A vote for Jones is a wasted vote because he will receive the nomination regardless. His best chance to be elected to the U.S. Senate is to face Moore in November. If Democrats rally around Moore in March, they will elect Jones in November.

Political strategies fascinate me.

Who the Republican nominee for the Senate will be is anybody's guess. I earlier predicted it was Byrne's race to win or lose. I still see him as the front runner, but Tommy Tuberville seems to be making traction. Tuberville is running a Trump campaign – I'm not a politician and we don't need career politicians in Washington. It's catching hold. If I was running against Tuberville, I would buy newspaper and television ads in Tuscaloosa and Birmingham, with him showing the 'thumb' in fear of Auburn beating Alabama for a fifth straight year.

Don't forget that everybody running for office in 2020 has enough supporters to win an election. Those that win get their people to the polls.

 
 

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