Redrawn districts could hurt GOP

By Staff
Bob Ingram, Alabama Scene
MONTGOMERY–There is not much question that Alabama is a George Bush state. In the 2000 presidential election Bush crushed Democrat Al Gore by a whopping 58-42 per cent margin.
If the election were held today it would probably be even worse.
But there is a possibility that Alabama…or more correctly, the newly gerrymandered Third Congressional District…could deprive the Republican Party (and President Bush) of its paper-thin majority in the U. S. House of Representatives.
Presently the Republicans hold a 219-210 margin in the lower house. A switch of only five seats would give the Democrats control and the enormous power that goes with it…the speakership and the committee chairmanships.
One of those five seats could well be the Third District of Alabama, now represented by Bob Riley, who stepped down to run for governor.
When the Alabama Legislature re-districted the state earlier this year, it was the unprotected Riley district which was the target of the Democrat majority.
The end result was a re-drawn congressional district that stretches from the hill country of Cherokee County in northeast Alabama to the flatlands of south Montgomery County. One wag suggested that the peoples of the opposite end of that district don't even speak the same language.
But more important than the geographic extremes of this district are its demographics. Tens of thousands of blacks from the city of Montgomery were added to the district. The end result is that what once was a Republican district has tilted the other way.
This was underscored in the June primaries when almost twice as many votes were cast in the Democratic Primary for Congress in the Third District as were cast in the Reublican Primary.
The battle between Republican nominee State Rep. Mike Rogers of Anniston and Democratic nominee Joe Turnham of Auburn, the former chairman of the State Democratic Party, will be one of the most watched congressional races in the nation in November.
Its importance was underscored last week when Vice President Dick Chaney came to Montgomery for a fund-raising dinner for Rogers. More than $200,000 was raised at the event but if the polls can be believed it may not offset the political surgery done on the district by the Alabama Legislature.
A powerful group of Auburn alumni must be wondering what is going on in the Alabama governors race.
The group has had a long-running fight with Auburn trustee Bobby
Lowder, who they think runs the show at the university. To get at him, the organization has set its sights on the defeat of Gov. Don Siegelman, who not only re-appointed Lowder to the board but also named several others to the board with close ties to the Montgomery banker.
Now comes the revelation–thanks to the Auburn-Opelika Daily
News–that Lowder has made substanitial contributions to the gubernatorial campaign of Republican Bob Riley, the candidate who was being supported by the Auburn alumni group.
Several PACs which Lowder has given huge contributions have in turn made large contributions to Riley. You can be sure those contributions were not made without Lowder's advice and consent.
In addition, when President Bush was in the state recently on
Riley's behalf, Lowder shelled out $50,000 to be photographed with the President.
To add to the political confusion of the Auburn dissidents, Gov.
Siegelman publicly admitted in an interview last week he had made a mistake in appointing at least two trustees to the Auburn board and had asked them to resign. That's the same song the Auburn alums have been singing for years.
Comes to mind the old expression, "You can't tell the players without a program." In Alabama politics, you need a program to know who is playing for who.

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Priceville students design art for SRO’s police car 

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Scott Stadthagen confirmed to University of West Alabama Board of Trustees 

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Hartselle plans five major paving projects for 2024 

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Future walking trail dubbed ‘Hartselle Hart Walk’ promotes heart health, downtown exploration 

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Chiropractor accused of poisoning wife asks judge to recuse himself 

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Hartselle seniors get early acceptance into pharmacy school  

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Farmers market to open Saturday for 2024 season

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Challenger Matthew Frost unseats longtime Morgan Commissioner Don Stisher

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Cheers to 50 years  

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Scott Stadthagen confirmed to University of West Alabama Board of Trustees 

Editor's picks

Hartselle graduate creates product for amputees 

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Tigers roar in Athens soccer win

Danville

Local family raises Autism awareness through dirt racing  

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Three Hartselle students named National Merit finalists  

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Morgan chief deputy graduates from FBI National Academy

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Hartselle students collect food for good cause 

Falkville

Falkville to hold town-wide yard sale next month

At a Glance

Danville man dies after vehicle leaves Hudson Memorial Bridge 

Editor's picks

Clif Knight, former Hartselle mayor, Enquirer writer, dies at 88

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Hartselle Utilities reminds community April is safe digging month 

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Teen powerhouse invited to compete in international strongman event

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Azaleas: An Alabama beauty 

Decatur

Master Gardeners plant sale returns in April

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Morgan leaders honored at annual banquet

x