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Daily News Digest – November 5, 2018

PRESENTED BY the Stop The HIT Coalition

Good morning! 24 hours from now polls will be open for the 2018 General Election. Here’s your Daily News for Monday, November 5.

1. One more day.

The election is almost here! Things will go your way if you can hold on for one more day .
What will happen in Alabama?
  • Few surprises, probably.
  • Caroline Beck put together an excellent Weekend Digest that runs through all the election stories and information you’re likely to need from a statewide perspective. Even the weather!
  • It is worth a read HERE, and make sure you are receiving Caroline’s Weekend Digest each Sunday.
What will happen nationally?
  • An interesting thing is happening: the midterm congressional races are getting even tighter.
  • The latest WaPo/Suffolk poll has Democrats’ lead on the generic ballot at 7 points, down from 11 in September and 14 in August.
  • The latest NBC/WSJ poll has Democrats generic ballot lead down to 6 points.
  • And a Politico/Morning Consult poll had Democrat’s lead down to FOUR points.
  • As it happens, 7 points is about exactly what Democrats need to win the House, historically speaking.
  • It’s why Nate Silver is saying Republicans basically need a systematic sampling error in the polling to retain the majority – but that is completely plausible!
  • The New York Times has been continuously polling the hottest House and Senate races and you can see those updated results one by one HERE.
  • Come Wednesday morning, we could be talking about a two or three seat House majority for either side. Fun with coalition governments!

2. Alabama Senate Ratings.

  • Of the 35 seats in the Alabama State Senate, 15 are being contested on Tuesday’s General Election Ballot.
  • That’s not to say this cycle hasn’t been competitive in the Senate. There were some heated races in places where the primary all but decides who the senator will be: Garlan Gudger knocked off incumbent Sen. Paul Bussman, Chris Elliot won an uber-competitive primary down in deep-red Baldwin County, and David Burkett defeated Montgomery Rep. John Knight like four times.
  • Republicans will certainly hold on to their solid majority in the Senate. The question is whether they add to it, hold pat, or lose a seat?
  • Republican Donnie Chesteen replacing Independent Sen. Harri Anne Smith in Dothan means President Pro Tem Del Marsh and Majority Leader Greg Reed will add one more to their caucus. But, they need to fend off another independent in Craig Ford in the SD10 race and prevent incumbent Sen. Larry Stutts from losing his seat to Democratic Rep. Johnny Mack Morrow in SD6.
  • Take a look at my ratings for Alabama Senate races and let me know your thoughts. Also included are links to the informative Senate profile stories from Will Whatley and Caroline Beck.
  • I very much appreciate all the feedback I got for the House ratings, which you can find HERE.

A Message from Stop The HIT Coalition

  • Did you know Alabama small businesses and middle-class families will be hit with a new tax on January 1, 2020?
  • Absent immediate Senate action, the 2020 Health Insurance Tax (HIT) will begin driving up the cost of care for hardworking Alabamians by as much as $450 in 2020.
  • Senator Doug Jones can help address skyrocketing healthcare costs by co-sponsoring bipartisan legislation (S. 3063) to suspend the Health Insurance Tax in 2020.
  • Ask Senator Jones to stop the HIT on Alabama small businesses and hardworking families.


3. Getting into the jobs report.

  • The American economy is really, really strong right now.
  • Employers added more than 250,000 jobs in October, defying expectations.
  • Unemployment remains at 3.7 percent – the lowest level in 50 years.
  • Average hourly wages shot up by 3.1 percent, the steepest spike in pay in almost ten years.
  • Consumer confidence is crazy good. A four percent uptick in consumer spending in Q3 helped grow the economy by 3.4 percent – again defying expectations.
  • Read more details about the surging economy and what it means HERE.
  • People vote with their wallets, right? Doesn’t that mean Republicans are safe?
  • In Alabama, probably so. A booming economy and the absence of a dramatic scandal will help Republicans sail to victory.
  • But nationally, there’s a lot more to pay attention to. In the latest WaPo/ABC News poll, only 15 percent say the economy is their top voting issue.
  • Another USA Today/Suffolk poll showed the economy was fourth on a list of issues important to voters.
  • In these final hours, President Trump and Congressional Republicans are casting the election as a choice to continue the success or “take a wrecking ball” to the economy.

4. Matthew Stokes: It’s almost over, but really it’s not.

  • Ever been told that this is the most important election in your lifetime?
  • Wait. Are you told that every election cycle by candidates who need votes and pundits who need ratings?
  • Alabama Daily News Columnist Matthew Stokes has, and in his almost 20 years of voting, the stakes somehow keep getting raised.
  • And sure, this election is important, he writes, and things will change as a result. But there’s a lot more to it.
  • As important as voting is, perhaps it shouldn’t be sold as our only civic responsibility.
  • An excerpt:
“…our work as citizens does not end on Tuesday.  It is good to remind ourselves that most of our problems are not solved in Washington and Montgomery.  The government cannot love us and care for us, and we should not ask it to. Instead, let’s continue to do the hard but rewarding work in our own lives and communities, knowing that in time, our politics will reflect that reality.”
  • Man, that’s such a good point.
  • Read Matthew’s full column HERE.

5. News Briefs.

Prattville child killed in gun accident
  • A 9-year-old Prattville girl has died in an apparent accidental shooting.
  • Autauga County Sheriff Joe Sedinger says the Prattville girl apparently shot herself with a handgun Sunday afternoon.
  • She was flown to a hospital where she died from her wounds. Authorities haven’t released the girl’s name pending the notification of relatives.
  • Read more HERE.
Jefferson County
  • One of the state’s biggest local elections on the ballot this year is Jefferson County District Attorney.
  • The position has been in upheaval the last few years, and Both Republican Mike Anderton and Democrat Danny Car have each held the job at different times, Carr temporarily appointed by a JeffCo judge and Anderton appointed by Gov. Kay Ivey.
  • Now they’re running against each other and it’s a pretty important race.
  • Read more in a thorough profile piece from WBRC’s Beth Shelburne HERE.
Business backs Ivey
  • The state’s business community is solidly behind Gov. Kay Ivey over challenger Walt Maddox, both in financial and stated support.
  • Mike Cason has a story today detailing how businesses chose sides this election.
  • It’s both from a collective stand point – The Business Council of Alabama, Alabama Farmers Federation, Realtors, Retail, etc. are all on board – and that of individual businesses – big companies like Alabama Power & Great Southern Wood are among her biggest donors.
  • Read Mike’s full story HERE.


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Race ratings: Alabama Senate
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – American economy strong heading into midterm elections
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – ‘Everything is at stake’ on even of Trump’s first midterm
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Sheriff: 9-year-old dies after accidental shooting.
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Matthew Stokes: It’s almost over, but really it’s not.
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Caroline Beck: Weekend Digest, November 4, 2018
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Path to power: House races to watch on election night
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Path to power: Senate races to watch on election night
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ivey touts experience, Maddox the need for change
AL.COM – UAB, partners working to reach Alabamians most at-risk for lung cancer.
AL.COM – Big bucks could roll into Birmingham for redevelopment.
AL.COM – Columnist Dana McCain: Principled voters, America needs you.
AL.COM – Encompass Health gives $250K to fund Tuskegee University scholarships
AL.COM – Utah mayor killed in Afghanistan during an apparent insider attack
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – A voter’s guide to Alabama’s statewide races
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – A voter’s guide to the amendments on the 2018 Alabama ballot
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – River Bank & Trust expands with merger
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Man shot on West South Blvd., later dies at hospital, Montgomery police report
DOTHAN EAGLE – Government Oversight: Dothan’s EPA Brownfields grant projects moving forward
DOTHAN EAGLE – Going to the Peanut Festival Monday? These are your best bets
DOTHAN EAGLE – Chipola Theatre offers free admission to upcoming performances
BIRMINGHAM WATCH – 2018 General Election Voter Guide: Alabama Voters Face Nov. 6 Election with Few Statewide Races Predicted as Close
BIRMINGHAM WATCH – Kay Ivey’s Campaign for Governor out of Public Spotlight, in Friendly Terrain
BIRMINGHAM WATCH – Maddox Defines Himself as Voice of Progress as Election Day Nears
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Senate candidate Caroline Self may be ineligible for office.
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Birmingham police officer inspires community with ‘random acts of kindness’
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Lemonds makes lemonade by giving back, helping others in Alabama
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Information on all four of Alabama’s proposed constitutional amendments
LAGNIAPPE – Three-way race for open District 96 seat.
LAGNIAPPE – Redistricting could make House District 97 competitive.
LAGNIAPPE – State senate candidate defends expenditure for legislative office.
LAGNIAPPE – Columnist Rob Holder: As the election approaches …
LAGNIAPPE – Columnist Jeff Poor: What newspaper endorsements in Alabama tell us.
LAGNIAPPE – Columnist Ken Robinson: Voting: focusing on the real problems
TUSCALOOSA NEWS – Screaming man interrupts EWTN’s live mass
TUSCALOOSA NEWS – Mayor fires public works director again in Alabama city
TUSCALOOSA NEWS – Man gets 25 years for slamming baby into stairs
DECATUR DAILY – Youth Explosion: Event envisioned, organized by Decatur youth will feature local performers
DECATUR DAILY – Decatur High grad makes video of Hurricane Michael aftermath
DECATUR DAILY – Rent-to-own peril: Breached contract can lead to felony charge
TIMES DAILY – Bacterial meningitis can kill, requires immediate treatment
TIMES DAILY – Absentees balloting high for upcoming election
TIMES DAILY – Tuscumbia man, 86, killed in accident
ANDALUSIA STAR NEWS – New app adds magic to Candyland
ANDALUSIA STAR NEWS – Ag losses in Alabama expected to top $300M
ANDALUSIA STAR NEWS – Teens hosting tailgate party at Andalusia Manor
TROY MESSENGER – Troy moves into first all by themselves with win over Louisiana-Lafayette
TROY MESSENGER – Man arrested on murder charge, police seeking second suspect
TROY MESSENGER – Troy University student injured in pedestrian hit and run
THE ANNISTON STAR – Look Back … to PCBs discovered in Choccolocco fish, 1993
THE ANNISTON STAR – Healthcare has been top-of-mind for voters, politicians in election cycle
THE ANNISTON STAR – Researcher shares Calhoun County law enforcement history with genealogy group
GADSDEN TIMES – Etowah County’s legislative delegation will have new faces.
GADSDEN TIMES – Etowah County Career Technical Center students build shadowboxes for veterans
GADSDEN TIMES – Mayor of Utah city killed in ‘insider attack’ in Afghanistan
GADSDEN TIMES – Ga. governor hopeful Kemp cites voter database hacking attempt, gives no evidence
OPELIKA-AUBURN NEWS – Fundraiser for three Auburn schools set for Sunday
OPELIKA-AUBURN NEWS – Four in Tallapoosa County, including teen, face drug charges
OPELIKA-AUBURN NEWS – No. 11 Auburn pulls away to top Lincoln Memorial in exhibition action
CULLMAN TIMES – Boy, 11, fatally shoots grandmother then self after being asked to clean room, deputies say
CULLMAN TIMES – Report: Newlyweds killed in helicopter crash while leaving their wedding
CULLMAN TIMES – First-time voters push early voting numbers beyond 2014 total in some states
SHELBY COUNTY REPORTER – Montevallo finishes regular season 9-1, heads to playoffs with momentum
SHELBY COUNTY REPORTER – Stamba leads Helena to win over Calera in final game of 2018
SHELBY COUNTY REPORTER – Briarwood dominates 6A Hueytown ahead of playoffs
THE MADISON RECORD – New season brings high expectations at Bob Jones
THE MADISON RECORD – Madison Academy claims Blue Ribbon status
THE MADISON RECORD – James Clemens Host Sectional Cross Country Meet; Qualify Both Squads For State Meet
DAILY MOUNTAIN EAGLE – Land of the free
DAILY MOUNTAIN EAGLE – One GOP, two Independents vying for county sheriff job
DAILY MOUNTAIN EAGLE – Viking band wins Class 5A state championship
NEW YORK TIMES – Ballot Initiatives Are Powerful. The Powerful Have Noticed.
NEW YORK TIMES – Brian Kemp’s Office, Without Citing Evidence, Investigates Georgia Democrats Over Alleged ‘Hack’
NEW YORK TIMES – Trump Rallies and a Race for Votes: Scenes From the Final Stage of the Campaigns
WASHINGTON POST – Midterms test whether Republicans not named Trump can win by stoking racial animosity
WASHINGTON POST – ‘Full Trumpism’: The president’s apocalyptic attacks reach a new level of falsity
WASHINGTON POST – Disasters and drama combine, again, in election-year Florida
USA TODAY – A look at the polls ahead of the 2018 midterm elections shows tighter Democratic lead
USA TODAY – Crashed Lion Air jet had airspeed problem on 4 flights
USA TODAY – ‘I was angry and I sent it’: Another Kavanaugh accuser referred to FBI after recanting
POLITICO – ‘Trump has hijacked the election’: House Republicans in panic mode
POLITICO – POLITICO Race Ratings: GOP braces for House loss
POLITICO – Trump administration is very ‘tough on Iran,’ Pompeo says


Front Pages (images link to newspaper websites, which you should visit and patronize)





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