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Et tu, GOP?; A political deck of cards; and more in this week’s OTR

Off The Record: The latest rumors and rumblings in North Alabama


Et tu, GOP?

It was an interesting scene Wednesday on the floor of the U.S. Senate as about a dozen Republicans, including Sens. Lindsay Graham and Joni Ernst – a former commander in the Army Reserve and Iowa Army National Guard, stepped forward during a four-hour mission to urge Sen. Tommy “Coach” Tuberville to cease and desist his hold on nearly 400 military promotions. Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska, a colonel in the Marine Corps Reserve, called Tuberville’s blockade a “national security suicide mission.” The Senate brought up individuals one-by-one Wednesday, as Tuberville had one time called for, but he objected to each of the 61 nominees, including a vote for a two-star general nominated to be a deputy commander in the Air Force, which drew an angry response from Graham: “You just denied this lady a promotion … You did that.” Locally, Redstone Arsenal has come out against Tuberville’s move: “The ongoing confirmation holds on military nominees cause unnecessary risks to the readiness of the force,” the Space and Missile Defense Command said in July. His GOP colleagues’ efforts may have paid off, though when the Senate confirmed three high positions for the Navy, Air Force and Marines.

A hands-off showdown

Two sitting congressmen, Rep. Jerry Carl (R-Mobile) and Rep. Barry Moore (R-Enterprise), will be running against each other in the upcoming republican primary after Alabama’s congressional map was redrawn by federal courts for effect in the 2024 election. While Alabama’s current congressional delegation is expected to stay out of the upcoming showdown, astute observers might notice a few telling details. “Jerry’s a good friend of mine,” and “Congressman Carl has done a great job for Alabama,” are a couple of the comments made by members of the delegation. On the other hand, comments regarding Moore have a distinctly different flavor, “It’s unfortunate.”   

Shuffling a political deck of cards

OTR has featured three local office holders eyeing other positions and two of those three decisions have now been dealt, which means the cards start to shuffle to replace them. The first card out of the deck was Madison City Councilman Teddy Powell who filed to run in the special election for Alabama House District 10. Should he prevail in his race his Council vacancy would be filled by the Madison City Council and not by the voters.

The second card out of the deck was Sen. Clay Scofield who made it official this week and took a new position at the Business Council of Alabama. His State Senate seat will be filled by a Special Election and has already drawn two House members from Marshall County, Wes Kitchens and Brock Colvin. Of course should either of these legislators prevail, a special election would be needed to replace them in the deck as well.

Lastly, insiders are waiting to see when, of if, the third card will be dealt which is House Minority Leader Anthony Daniels as he considers a run for the newly redrawn Second Congressional District that runs across south central Alabama. Should he run and win that election next November that would not only create an open house seat in Madison County – to be filled by a special election – but also at the top of the House Democratic Caucus in Montgomery.

Of course don’t forget the original card that fell out of the deck was David Cole, who resigned his seat after pleading guilty to criminal charges. Would that make him the Joker?

Real estate perplexity

It could be a wild west for brokerages … but not until years of appeals. That’s the word from a local insider after a jury agreed with plaintiffs who objected to the commissions they were obligated to pay buyers’ brokers. The National Association of Realtors and some brokerages will appeal the verdict in a likely years-long effort. “But if the compensation model did change because of this litigation, it would be painful for Realtors and their clients who would likely have fewer professionals to rely on,” our insider says.  


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