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Sore loser has Gore-ish tendencies

By Staff
Bob Ingram, The Alabama Scene
Editor's note: The following column was written before Gov. Don Siegelman conceeded the governor's race Monday night.
MONTGOMERY–While the battle over who won the governor's race continues unabated, another question being raised is how long can Don Siegelman continue this fight before he inflicts permanent political damage on himself?
At what point does he become the "sore loser", at what point does he become…as one has already said…"Al Gorish"?
As of this writing, the demand for a statewide recount is in the collective laps of the State Supreme Court.
The court is not expected to hear oral arguments until after the election returns are officially certified by Secretary of State Jim Bennett on Wednesday (Nov. 20).
If the court upholds the advisory opinion issued by Atty. Gen. Bill Pryor that the ballot boxes cannot be unsealed, at least one man of some political clout thinks that would be the time for Siegelman to toss in the towel.
Dr. David Bronner, CEO of the Retirement Systems of Alabama whose constituents are many of the same people who supported
Siegelman–teachers and state employees–says if the court should rule against the governor it would be time to call it quits.
"In the event of a ruling unfavorable to him by the Supreme Court, for him to persist after that…to carry the issue to the Legislature…could be damaging to his future career," Bronner said.
"And he is young enough to have a political future," he added.
Dr. Bronner said he had talked to Siegelman by phone on several occasions since the election.
"My advice, for what it was worth, was that if he had some real evidence to turn around the results then go for it," Bronner said. "But I told him if that all he had was the Baldwin County mistake…and that is all that it was…then it was time to quit."
Still a possibility is that Siegelman, even if rebuffed by the courts in seeking a re-count, could contest the election and drop this political hot potato into the laps of the Legislature.
But even in that Democrat-dominated assembly he has received little encouragement.