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Daily News Digest – June 21, 2022

Good morning!

It’s runoff election day in Alabama. A tip of the cap to all the candidates and campaign workers who have labored this cycle taking part in this great American experiment. Polls are open until 7:00 p.m. so don’t forget to vote!

Here’s your Daily News for Tuesday, June 21.


1. Long Republican Senate race ends today

  • It has been 500 days since AP’s Kim Chandler had the scoop of Alabama political scoops: that U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby would not seek reelection to a seventh term in U.S. Senate.
  • Since that day – Feb. 5, 2021 – the race to replace Shelby has been a wild one, with multiple lead changes, tens of millions spent and endorsement oscillation.
  • Today that race comes to an end on the Republican side, as Katie Britt faces Mo Brooks in a primary runoff. The winner will face Democrat Will Boyd in November.
  • This race has gotten national attention and will again today. Don’t be surprised if much of that focuses on former President Donald Trump’s endorsement of Britt late in the game. That, of course, is the latest big story in the race and the easiest narrative.
  • But ADN readers will know that Trump’s endorsement came after polls showed Britt with a commanding lead, as we wrote about in the last edition of Inside Alabama Politics (paywall removed if you’d like to enjoy).
  • It’s nice to be leading in the polls, but there’s something especially nerve-racking about being expected to win and having that result left up to a fickle electorate.
  • Will Katie’s ground game come through? Or will Mo’s recent groundswell of support from right-wing influencers buoy him to victory?
  • We’ll see tonight.
  • Read more from Kim Chandler and Jill Colvin HERE.
  • Also, if you’re bored on election day, you can always check out my interviews with Britt HERE and with Brooks HERE.



2. Down the ballot

  • The Senate contest may be the marquee matchup, but there’s a lot more on the ballot today.
  • On the Democratic side, there’s the race to see who meets Gov. Kay Ivey in November as their nominee for governor. Malika Sanders-Fortier, a state senator from Selma, faces Yolanda Flowers, a career educator from Birmingham.
  • There’s a big race for Congress in North Alabama’s 5th Congressional District where former Huntsville Superintendent Casey Wardynski is facing Madison County Commission President Dale Strong. Mo Brooks has held that seat for 12 years.
  • State Rep. Wes Allen faces State Auditor Jim Zeigler for the GOP nomination for the key job of secretary of state. Remember, you can WATCH or LISTEN to my interviews with both candidates.
  • For State Auditor, it’s Birmingham pastor Stan Cooke versus State Rep. Andrew Sorrell for all the marbles, as there is no Democrat running.
  • And on the Public Service Commission, incumbent Jeremy Oden faces a challenge from Brent Woodall and incumbent Chip Beeker faces a challenge from Robert McCollum.
  • Read more about these races from Jay Reeves HERE.



3. 11 legislative contests on the ballot today

  • Three incumbent Alabama House members are trying to hold onto their seats today while another six runoff contests are for open seats in the House.
  • For the State Senate, there are two high profile runoffs for open seats, one on the Republican side and one for Democrats.
  • See the full legislative ballot slate HERE.



4. State Personnel Board allows for up to 10% pay increase for senior employees

  • Any other day and this story would a lot higher up.
  • The State Personnel Board last week voted to add four steps of 2.5% to state employees’ pay structure.
  • The increases are tied to job performance and employees could increase two steps, or 5%, on his or her employment anniversary date. Agencies are not required to give the increases.
  • In a letter to agencies explaining the increases, the board said about 7,500 employees are topped out in their current pay range, and the turnover rate exceeds 17%. Additionally, the State’s workforce has declined by more than 1,500 employees in the last two years.
  • State Personnel Director Jackie Graham said the majority of employees at the top of their current pay structure will not see an immediate increase, “but will at least be eligible for a pay increase within the next few years.”
  • Read more from Mary Sell HERE.


5. 1/6 panel to hear from Raffensperger, others Trump pushed

  • The hearings investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack at the U.S. Capitol resume today with a focus on Trump’s relentless effort to undo Joe Biden’s victory in the most local way — by leaning on officials in key battleground states to reject ballots outright or to submit alternative electors for the final tally in Congress.
  • Embattled Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger is scheduled to testify about Trump’s phone call asking him to “find 11,780” votes that could flip the state to prevent Biden’s election victory.
  • Raffensperger, with his deputy Gabe Sterling and Arizona’s Republican state House Speaker Rusty Bowers, are scheduled to be key witnesses, along with Wandrea “Shay” Moss, a former Georgia election worker who, with her mother, have said they faced such severe public harassment from Trump allies they felt unable to live normal lives.
  • Today’s focus will review how Trump was repeatedly told his pressure campaign could potentially cause violence against the local officials and their families but pursued it anyway, according to a select committee aide.
  • The hearing is scheduled to begin at noon Central.
  • Read more and watch the hearing live HERE.




ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Inside Alabama Politics – June 15, 2022


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Election 2022: Long Republican Senate race ends today


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama runoffs: Down the ballot


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – 11 Legislative contests on ballot today


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – State Personnel Board allows for up to 10% pay increase for senior employees


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – 1/6 panel to hear from Raffensperger, others Trump pushed


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Britt and Brooks make final push in Senate runoff


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Poll: Britt’s lead grows after Trump endorsement


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Capitol Journal: Allen, Zeigler make final runoff pitches for Secretary of State


AL.COM – Primary runoff day in Alabama is Tuesday: What time do polls open? Close? Sample ballots


AL.COM – Expanded runway coming to Northeast Alabama Regional Airport


AL.COM – Mobile’s Austal USA gets $128 million Navy floating dry dock contract


AL.COM – The US marks World Refugee Day, even as it accepts fewer refugees


AL.COM – As the South struggles with high hysterectomy rates, Black women lead the fight for change


Montgomery Advertiser – Alabama runoff preview: 4 Republican races, 1 Democratic contest on statewide ballot


Montgomery Advertiser – Alabama runoff preview: 4 Republican races, 1 Democratic contest on statewide ballot


Montgomery Advertiser – What happened to the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee that was in front of Lee High?


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – State’s shift of judgeship causes anger for some


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Will a federal gas tax holiday bring relief to drivers?


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Why are airlines experiencing travel delays and cancellations?


Decatur Daily – Alabama police chief in hospital after wreck with tractor


Decatur Daily – Father’s Day: Decatur man serves as father figure to the community


Decatur Daily – Area systems using SROs this summer following two recent fatal school shootings


Times Daily – Solid Waste Authority could net almost 500K from property sale


Times Daily – Tuscumbia man dies in single-vehicle crash


Times Daily – Festival of Litha returns to Wilson Park


Anniston Star – Role of father and coach a double honor


Tuscaloosa News – Tuscaloosa environmentalist honored for protecting Hurricane Creek


Tuscaloosa News – One dead, another injured in shooting at Tuscaloosa apartment complex


Tuscaloosa News – Where to watch fireworks on July 4th in Tuscaloosa


YellowHammer News – Rand Paul: ‘It makes a difference’ who voters choose in GOP primary — ‘Mo is unafraid’


YellowHammer News – Tuberville promotes bill allowing cryptocurrency investment in 401(k) plans


YellowHammer News – State Sen. Whatley: Democrats choosing GOP nominee is ‘fraud’ against the party


Gadsden Times – Big Brothers/Big Sisters marks 40 years of matching mentors and making lives better


Gadsden Times – Alabama runoff preview: 4 Republican races, 1 Democratic contest on statewide ballot


Gadsden Times – Locally funded renovations to exterior of Walnut Gallery currently in progress


Dothan Eagle – Raffensperger to testify at 1/6 hearing; Biden weighs gas tax holiday; Westminster dog show begins


Dothan Eagle – South Dakota impeachment trial will probe AG’s fatal crash


Dothan Eagle – 1/6 panel to hear from Raffensperger, others Trump pushed


Opelika-Auburn News – EXPLAINER: What’s next after Russia reduced gas to Europe?


Opelika-Auburn News – Nobel sold for Ukrainian kids shatters record at $103.5M


Opelika-Auburn News – Africa ‘taken hostage’ by Russia’s invasion, Zelenskyy says


WSFA Montgomery – Will a federal gas tax holiday bring relief to drivers?


WSFA Montgomery – Chambers County deputy dies during car chase


WSFA Montgomery – Inmate recaptured after escape from Fountain Correctional in Atmore


WAFF Huntsville – Decision 2022: State House candidates continue campaign for runoff


WAFF Huntsville – Teenage girl stabbed to death in North Nashville


WAFF Huntsville – Chambers County deputy dies during car chase


WKRG Mobile – Israel coalition to fast-track bill to dissolve parliament


WKRG Mobile – ‘Everything is on fire’: Ukraine region weathers bombardment


WKRG Mobile – Colombian voters elect country’s first Black vice president


WTVY Dothan – Authorities identify victims killed in shooting at church in Vestavia Hills


WTVY Dothan – Houston Academy graduate starts car detailing business to avoid student loans


WTVY Dothan – LifeSouth’s needs for blood donors is critical


WASHINGTON POST – As Latin America embraces a new left, the U.S. could take a back seat


WASHINGTON POST – Speaker at meeting of Ginni Thomas group called Biden’s win illegitimate long after Jan. 6, video shows


WASHINGTON POST – Oil refineries are making a windfall. Why do they keep closing?


NEW YORK TIMES – The Government Set a Colossal Wildfire. What Are Victims Owed?


NEW YORK TIMES – After a Pivotal Period in Ukraine, U.S. Officials Predict the War’s Path


NEW YORK TIMES – A Shopping Trip for Apples, Over the Last Bridge in Lysychansk


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Stock Futures, Bitcoin Jump After S&P 500’s Worst Week in Two Years


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Inflation Collides With Growth Fears to Trigger Big Swings in the Bond Market


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Companies Find Leaving Russia Difficult, Though Many Are Trying



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