Madison County Circuit Clerk Jane Smith announced today that “I am officially joining the Republican Party… For those of you who know me, this is no surprise… I will be proud of the stand I take here today… We must join together as conservatives and Republicans… Standing on the sidelines is not an option… [we need] change from the Courthouse to the Statehouse to the White House.”
Brian and I attended the Madison County Republican breakfast this morning, along with a couple of hundred officials, members, and fellow travelers.
State Representative Howard Sanderford (R-20) announced that five Democratic Representatives will be joining the GOP, further confirming the rumors that have been floating around since Phil Williams (R-6) mentioned the gains earlier this week. Sanderford noted that there are just a few white Democrats left in the State Legislature, and not that many more black Democrats.
I think that the national Republican conservative / Democratic liberal realignment rolled into Alabama state politics this year, completing a process that has been building for years. I think that we will see a GOP realignment at the County level and it won’t take long to realize those gains. The dam burst in the November elections here in Madison County with every Democrat at the county level being defeated. There are one or two more local Democrats I’d like to see come over.
To take Sanderford’s point to the next level, I think that we’ll see a realignment in the black community. The GOP has some work to do to make that happen, but blacks are more conservative than liberal and aren’t being served by corrupt Democrats and liberals. Some people might be surprised when this happens here in Alabama – but I think black folks will come home to the GOP.
Coroner-elect Craig Whisenant spoke to the crowd for a minute, saying that his plan to reform the Coroner’s office is coming together. Once he takes office (note that the Democrats and The Times are complaining about him before he’s even been sworn in), I think we’ll see some positive changes in the office. I chatted with Whisenant after the meeting (first time to talk in real life) and he said that he will send us details of the plan soon.