Alabama's voter turnout for Tuesday's election was slightly less than the unusually high performance four years ago.
Secretary of State Beth Chapman said Wednesday the turnout for the general election was 72.4 percent. More than 73 percent of Alabama's voters participated in 2008. Chapman had forecast the turnout would fall between 72 percent and 74 percent.
The 2008 figure remains the highest since Alabama recorded a 76 percent turnout in the 1992 presidential race, according to figures compiled by the secretary of state's office.
Alabama Republican Party Chairman Bill Armistead is accusing Democratic chief justice candidate Bob Vance of violating federal election law with a $2,000 contribution to Barack Obama's presidential campaign in 2008.
Armistead filed a complaint with the Federal Elections Commission on Thursday saying that Vance should have registered as a federal campaign committee after he made the contribution from his state campaign account.
Four of the justices who served on the Alabama Supreme Court with former Chief Justice Roy Moore are among 10 bipartisan former and current justices who have signed a letter endorsing Moore's opponent in the Nov. 6 chief justice election.
Moore's opponent in the chief justice race, Democrat Bob Vance, held a news conference Tuesday in front of the Alabama Judicial Building to release the letter.
The political consulting firm that helped Robert Bentley win the governor's office is now helping persuade voters to give him more money to lure jobs to Alabama. Bentley is appearing in TV ads urging voters to vote yes on Amendment 2 in the election Nov. 6. The ads were done by Dresner Wickers Barber Sanders. That's a San Francisco firm that helped get across Bentley's message in 2010 that he would not draw a salary as governor until he got Alabama's high unemployment rate down to normal levels.
Alabama Secretary of State Beth Chapman says absentee ballots for military and overseas voters went out late from 22 counties and an extra 10 days is being provided for the return of the ballots. Chapman said federal law gives military and overseas voters 45 days to receive and return their absentee ballots. But not all ballots requested by the Sept. 22 deadline were sent out on time. She is extending the deadline for election officials to receive the ballots by 10 days to Nov. 16. But the ballots must be postmarked or given to a commercial carrier by Nov. 5.
Amendment 7 on Alabama's ballot looks like a simple measure to preserve the right to a secret ballot. In reality, it injects voters into a battle between labor and management. The ballot measure provides that Alabama citizens have a fundamental right to vote for public office and employee representation by secret ballot. If passed, it would prohibit unions from organizing by card check, where they get more than half of the employees at a company to check a box on a card saying they want union representation. The sponsor, Republican Rep.
Alabama voters on Nov. 6 will get another chance to remove racist sections of the Alabama Constitution. Amendment No. 4 on the ballot would remove language from the 1901 Alabama Constitution that includes providing for separate schools for black and white students and levying a poll tax. Supporters say this amendment is different from one narrowly rejected by voters in 2004. That one removed the same sections, but also removed language that says there is no right to a public education at taxpayer's expense.
Alabama's 5th congressional district covers the entire northern part of Alabama stretching from Florence to Huntsville. In Democratic hands for over a century it's only been recently that District 5 has gone Republican, with Mo Brooks victory in 2010. Brooks is being opposed this time around by Democrat Charlie Holley. Alabama Public Radio's Ryan Vasquez spoke with Dr.
Gov. Robert Bentley is crisscrossing the state to ask voters to approve a constitutional amendment that could determine how successful he is in keeping his campaign promise to create jobs. Bentley is urging voters to approve Amendment 2 on Nov. 6. He says it will give the state a new avenue for providing incentives for industries to locate in Alabama. Alabama's Constitution already allows the state to sell up to $750 million in bonds for industrial incentives. The state is near that limit.
Alabama voters will decide on Nov. 6 whether to continue a 20-year-old program that has allowed the state to buy 220,000 acres of public land to be used for hunting, fishing, birding and other activities. It's the second time Alabama residents have been asked to vote on Forever Wild. The first was in 1992, when voters authorized the state to buy wilderness lands. Forever Wild was approved with 83 percent of votes in the 1992 referendum. It uses earnings from oil and gas revenue in the Alabama Trust Fund and does not take funds from the General Fund or education budgets.
A federal judge has given former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman permission to travel to Charlotte, N.C., next week to attend the Democratic National Convention. The convention is a week before Siegelman is to report to a federal prison in Louisiana to finish his 78-month sentence. U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller said Siegelman can travel to Charlotte Sept. 3-6. Fuller ordered Siegelman to advise his probation officer of his flight plans and hotel plans. Siegelman plans to lobby at the convention for President Obama to grant his request for clemency.