Ivey moves special election date

Ferrin Cox

Thursday, Apr 20,2017

Governor Kay Ivey announced Tuesday that she was moving the date for the special election to fill the U. S. Senate seat vacated by the resignation of Jeff Sessions. Jeff Sessions resigned as the Junior Senator from Alabama when President Donald Trump appointed him as U. S. Attorney General.

The date for the election had originally be set by then Governor Robert Bentley to coincide with the 2018 General Elections. Bentley cited the high cost of a special election for delaying the election until 2018.

Ivey estimates it will cost $15 million to hold a special election but “following the law trumps the expense of a special election”

Governor Bentley appointed Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange to the position until the election is held. Strange has indicated all the time he intended to run for the position regardless of who got the temporary appointment. His appointment at the time the AG office was investigating Governor Bentley caused much grumbling. Those complaints only got louder when Bentley didn’t set the election “forthwith” as directed by state law.

The Democrat and Republican Party elections will be held on August 15, 2017. The final day for qualifying is May 17, 2017. However both the Democrat and Republican Parties have yet to meet and formally set qualifying fees and a date when qualification papers may be filled. Executive committees of both parties are expected to met this weekend and formally set the fees and dates.

Any runoffs for party nominations will be held on September 26 and the General Election will be on December12, 2017.

After Bentley resigned last week and Ivey ascended to the Governor’s office, she opted to hasten the election, citing legal reading of Alabama law which reads that the Governor will set the special election “forthwith”.

Strange has already been raising campaign funds for the upcoming race and his December 31st campaign report filed with the Federal Election Commission showed a total of $308,000 in the account. He said Tuesday morning of this week that he would be ready to run whether the election is next month or next year.

There are no other announced candidates for the office at this time.