Political candidates boosted by the backing of a group
Believe it or not, we are six months away from the 2022 election.
All statewide offices will be decided in the Republican primary on May 24, 2022. Winning the Republican primary is tantamount to an election in Heart of Dixie. Therefore, getting the approval of the most conservative group in the state is of vital importance for the elections.
That group is the Alabama Farmers Federation or commonly known as Alfa. Farm PAC Alfa’s endorsement is the gold standard for conservatism, and it’s the ticket to the election in Alabama.
The Alabama Farmers Federation is governed by the leaders of the county federations in each of the state’s 67 counties, and the word “chiefs” should be underlined. The leaders of each county federation are respected men who were born and raised in their community.
Many have owned farmland for generations, are respected agribusinesses, deacons in their churches, and board members of their local banks. In other words, they are centers of influence, and their words and recommendations extend far beyond their agricultural base. To gain Alfa’s approval, candidates from across the state must visit every member of the county federation in all 67 counties.
There are over 100,000 real farmers in the state voting the Alfa approved vote down the line. There are also affiliated agro-industrial groups that follow the Alfa line.
In addition, there are over 100,000 policyholders statewide who have auto and home insurance with Alfa and they see the Farm PAC endorsement and usually follow it because they have contributed to Farm PAC.
In addition, many Alabamians will see their friends and neighbors with an Alfa ballot and ask them who Alfa supported certain races. Then they will vote that way because they know Alfa has looked at the candidates and picked the more conservative ones.
Alfa riders for the May 24, 2022 elections were decided on September 28. These amendments will be decisive.
Katie Britt won approval for the open seat of the US Senate, which will be the marquee race next year. She got it the old fashioned way. She worked for it. She went out, visited and got to know almost every member of the state farmers’ federation. This endorsement will likely propel her to victory.
Governor Kay Ivey has received Alfa’s approval. She has been Alfa’s darling throughout her career. Farm PAC’s approval was key in securing him the gubernatorial post without a second round four years ago. They were with her from the start when she served as State Treasurer for two terms and during her two terms as Lieutenant Governor.
Will Ainsworth has received Alfa’s approval for re-election as Lieutenant Governor. This endorsement is the reason he upset Twinkle Cavanaugh in their run four years ago. Alfa was the reason he won this race and made his political career.
The incumbent attorney general, Steve Marshall, was endorsed by Alfa because he turned out to be a true conservative.
Rick Pate has secured Alfa’s support for a second term as Agriculture Commissioner. He got the approval four years ago and it helped him win. People are really interested in who Alfa approves for the agriculture commissioner.
Chip Beeker and Jeremy Oden, full members of the Civil Service Commission, received Alfa’s coveted nod.
One of Alfa’s most critical endorsements was the selection of Greg Cook for the Alabama Supreme Court seat occupied by retired Justice Mike Bolin. Cook’s approval is crucial. It proves that he is the pro-business conservative candidate for the Supreme Court. He will probably ensure his victory.
Popular outgoing Supreme Court judge Kelli Wise has secured Alfa’s approval, although it may be unopposed.
Three candidates for secondary constitutional positions have received Alfa’s approval and this will be decisive for their elections: Wes Allen for secretary of state, Young Boozer for state treasurer and Rusty Glover for auditor. Getting Glover’s approval in the race for state auditors is crucial, as is that of Allen in the race for secretary of state.
Alfa has backed all sitting Republican Congressmen including Jerry Carl, Barry Moore, Mike Rogers, Robert Aderholt and Gary Palmer. They supported Dale Strong in the 5th District Congressional Open Race. He seems to be the favorite.
All of Alfa’s statewide backers are Republican. This makes sense, because every public office holder in the state is a Republican. If you put me in a bet, I would bet all of the above-mentioned Alfa approved candidates will win next year. We’ll see in about six months.
Steve Flowers served 16 years in the Alabama Legislature. Readers can email him at [email protected]
This article originally appeared on The Tuscaloosa News: Inside the Statehouse: Candidates Boosted by Group Approval