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Sewell tops Smoot by 6,000 votes

Terri Sewell secured the Democratic position in the race for the U.S. Representative of the 7th Congressional District.

“I am so excited about this opportunity,” Sewell said. “This is really a victory for the 7th Congressional District and all the wonderful people who believed in this campaign from day one.”

Sewell defeated Shelia Smoot, a Jefferson County Commissioner.

In Dallas County, Sewell received 3,840 votes, a total of 82.78 percent, and Smoot received 799 votes, a total of 17.22 percent.

In the District, Sewell received 32,333 votes, 55 percent, and Smoot received 26,459 votes, 45 percent.

Sewell and her campaign volunteers still have more work to do.

“I will work tirelessly through now and November to earn the support of the entire district and win it in November,” she said.

Smoot felt that low voter turnout and finances were the factors to hinder her campaign.

“We had a great run,” Smoot said. “My folks were great. Most of them were volunteers and they had a lot of heart. This is the time of year when it’s hard for people to come out. It was tough in Perry and Jefferson to get them to come out, and it was tough all over the district. At the end of the day, I am very excited the 7th Congressional District is represented by a woman.”

Sewell and Don Chamberlain will compete for the position to replace U.S. Rep. Artur Davis, who will end his fourth term in November. He vacated his seat for governor. He was defeated in the June 1 Democratic primary by Ron Sparks.

Shirley Edwards, Sewell’s cousin, campaigned outside of the Orrville polling location Tuesday.

Most people visiting the location seemed enthusiastic about the run-off election and appreciated her comments.

“You always are going to have some that say they have already made their mind up, and we look for that, but people were very receptive,” Edwards said.

Edwards is proud of Sewell, but not just because she is family.

“She was qualified, so that makes it even better,” Edwards said.

Sewell grew up in Selma, graduating from Selma High School before attending Princeton University and Harvard Law School. She has worked as a lawyer since 1994. She works in the Birmingham law firm of Maynard, Cooper, & Gale, P.C.

Smoot resides in Birmingham. Her bachelor’s degree is in telecommunications from Michigan State University. She has served as a Jefferson County Commissioner since 2002, and is also a former reporter for television station WBRC in Birmingham.

The 7th Congressional District encompasses Greene, Choctaw, Sumter, Marengo, Dallas, Wilcox, Perry and Hale counties. It also includes parts of Jefferson, Tuscaloosa, Clarke, and Pickens counties.