Published 12:00 am Monday, November 6, 2006


Bob Riley (R): Bob Riley receives our endorsement for reelection as governor. During his first term Riley exhibited true leadership taking a state economy from a deficit situation to a resounding surplus. More importantly he took a leadership role in making politics on Goat Hill more open to the people it serves, something that many of our elected officials could learn from. Riley has also put an action plan in place, Plan 2010, with goals for Alabama during his next administration while his opponent, Lucy Baxley, has not provided much direction to what she would do if elected, choosing instead to focus her campaign on attacking Riley. Riley was also instrumental in reaching across the aisle to work with legislators in creating the Black Belt Commission to address issues and implement programs to improve the quality of life of those in the Black Belt. He also supported a state sales tax holiday to help families save money, primarily, on school related items, something that city and state officials deemed a success, as have families throughout the state. One item that is disconcerting is the state’s inability to land the Kia automotive plant that ended up in West Point, Ga., but the reality is that hundreds, if not thousands of Alabamians will benefit from the plant’s location on the Alabama border as current Hyundai suppliers ramp up production to serve Kia. New suppliers will also locate across the border in Alabama to serve Kia, all without the state having to pony up incentives such as those committed to for Mercedes, Hyundai, Honda and Toyota.

Add to all this that there has not been a governor since George Wallace that has served two full consecutive terms leading the state, something we think Riley is more than capable of doing.

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Lieutenant Governor

Jim Folsom Jr. (D): Jim Folsom is the most capable candidate for lieutenant governor. Serving in the capacity of lieutenant governor and as governor, Folsom helped bring the automobile industry to Alabama. He has innovative ideas for helping the Black Belt, particularly in developing biofuel technology, and in continuing to bring auto manufacturing and their suppliers to the state.

State Representative District 67

We choose not to endorse in this race.

Secretary of State

Beth Chapman (R): Nancy Worley’s term as Secretary of State has been nothing short of one controversy after another. Her inability to lead her department and foster loyalty among her staff is just one glaring example of a term filled with one disappointment after another, including an embarrassing lawsuit related to the state’s compliance with the Help America Vote Act. She has also abused her office by delaying refunds to counties who worked to comply with HAVA, instead holding funds until she could personally deliver them as a pre-election self-promotion ploy. Meanwhile, as state auditor Chapman has shown the leadership and enthusiasm for true government by the people service that has seen her department excel and become a model for how other state governmental agencies should run. Her no nonsense approach and undying support of our military are examples of the type of person we like seeing lead the office of secretary of state.

State Senate

Hank Sanders (D): Sanders has long been a strong advocate for the Black Belt counties and we believe he will continue to be.

Dallas County Probate Judge

Kim Ballard (D): Kim Ballard’s the most capable person for probate judge. He has been in elected office for 19 years, including his current position on the Dallas County Commission. This experience will serve him well in his capacity as chairman of the commission, as well as in running the operations of the probate judge’s office. That said, Republican candidate Brock Wells has brought some issues to the table that need to be addressed, including modernizing the courthouse and aggressively pursuing industry and business prospects.

Dallas County Sheriff

Harris Huffman (D): Huffman is a proven leader as the county’s top law enforcement officer.