Fortier wins Alabama Senate District 23 seat

Published 11:24 pm Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Malika Sanders-Fortier won the Alabama Senate District 23 seat on Tuesday night, defeating Mark Story.

With 80 percent of the precincts reported, according to WSFA, Fortier received 26,285 of the votes, compared to Story’s 14,049.

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Fortier succeeds her father, Sen. Hank Sanders, D, who decided not to run after serving 35 years in the seat.

During a rousing victory celebration at Sweet Advantages, Fortier thanked her campaign supporters.

“Everyone in this room contributed to me winning this race,” Fortier said. “This isn’t just a win for me, this is a win for all of us. Leadership is a responsibility. The city of Selma needs divine intervention.”

Fortier, the Dallas County School system Attorney, also thanked her husband, Franklin B. Fortier Jr. and her parents.

“I couldn’t have gone to law school or ran for Senate without my husband,” Fortier said. “Whatever needed to be done, he stepped in. I want to honor my father, who worked tirelessly in this community for 35 years. He’s amazing and drove me to all eight counties and said goodbye to those eight counties.”

Fortier immediately switched the topic to her main goals for her district: education, healthcare and economy. The District 23 includes Dallas, Wilcox, Lowndes, Marengo, Perry, Butler, Conecuh and Monroe Counties.

“The winning will continue to happen in education, the winning will continue to happen in health reform and the winning will continue to happen with the economy,” Fortier said.

Sanders, 76, is thrilled his daughter won and said that replacing him wasn’t in his plans.

“I’m extremely proud of her,” Sanders said. “This wasn’t my plan for her to follow me. But she will be a better Senator than me because she has a higher foundation and ready to better serve the people.”

Story, chairman of the Dallas County School Board, didn’t return the Selma Times-Journal’s calls at press time.