By Paul DeMarco
BIRMINGHAM — The unprecedented Republican Party Senate Primary Run-Off Election to select a challenger to Democrat Senator Doug Jones is almost upon us.
The race was rocking along though the primary that narrowed the candidates to former Senator Jeff Sessions and former Auburn Football Coach Tommy Tuberville when the coronavirus hit the state this spring and disrupted the candidates efforts to capture the Republican nomination.
Though we thought we would have a winner this past March, Governor Kay Ivey extended the election date almost another three months because of safety concerns related to the pandemic.
And while the coronavirus has not gone away, Sessions and Tuberville’s campaigns have become more visible in the past couple of weeks as we approach the July 14th run-off.
Both candidates have had to try different approaches to campaigning safely and are making their final pitches for votes. Yet, whoever gets the nomination will have to get right back to work for the long fight leading to the general election in November.
In the meantime, incumbent Democratic Senator Doug Jones is sitting on an $8 million war chest as he awaits who his Republican challenger will be in the fall. You can count on the Republican nominee to raise just as much as Jones or more by the fall election.
We live in uncertain times, but what we can say for certain is that once the Republican nominee is selected, this may be the most expensive election in Alabama history.
Paul DeMarco is a former member of the Alabama House of Representatives