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In the Weeds: Getting clarity w/ Congressman Barry Moore

The newly drawn Alabama Congressional District 1 will be a much better political fit for Rep. Barry Moore than the District 2 he was recently drawn out of, the congressman told Alabama Daily News on Thursday.

Moore, technically, is challenging incumbent Rep. Jerry Carl in District 1, but most of the nine counties in it are currently in District 2, which he’s represented since 2020.

From Dothan to Dauphin Island, the newly drawn district will be one of the most conservative in the nation, Moore said.

“Being a House Freedom Caucus member, being rated the most conservative member from (the Conservative Political Action Network) last year out of Alabama, it just makes sense that I can represent the district,” Moore said on In the Weeds, ADN’s podcast.

Listen below.

In the court-mandated congressional map changes approved in October, District 2 became the state’s second opportunity district where Black voters have a chance to elect the candidate of their choice. The district in the 2024 cycle will have a Black voting population of nearly 49 percent. District 2, which formerly included all of the Wiregrass region, now goes west dips into Mobile and stretches north to include all of Montgomery County. Moore’s hometown of Enterprise, in Coffee County, was drawn out of District 2 and into District 1. District 1 was stretched from the southwest corner of the state across the lower counties to the Georgia line. It became more white.

Moore said he doesn’t think he’s politically aligned with the new District 2.

“I just knew that every time I voted in Washington, D.C., my phones were going to be ringing and people weren’t going to be happy,” Moore said when asked if he considered running in that district. “…I’m not going to adjust who I am to represent a district. I want to be who I am and be a part of the district, be like the voter, be the voice, truly, of the voter.

“So for me … it was just tough to say, yeah, I’m going to run in a district that I don’t really look like, sound like, talk like, act like, vote like,” he said. “It’s just that I am so conservative, so for me it just doesn’t seem like I could do them folks a good job and that’s not fair to those 780,000 people. I just didn’t see a path forward unless I changed who Barry Moore was and I just wasn’t willing to do that.”

There is an opportunity for a Republican in AL-2, Moore said. Eight candidates from the GOP qualified for the March 5 primary last month, along with 13 Democrats.

“There is a path forward for the right Republican, but it’s not going to be someone who’s a House Freedom Caucus member, it’s going to be someone who’s more to the middle, more moderate.”

“… There is an opportunity for some minority Republican candidates to come in and step up.”

In his race, Moore said he plans on running on his record of serving constituents.

“I’m not going to tell you what I’m going to do, I’m going to say, look at what we’ve done and see if we’ve done a good job for you,” he said.

Carl, of Mobile, was also first elected in 2020. Last month said he expects Club for Growth, a Washington-based political group, to attack him again in this race. The group opposed him in 2020 and has previously supported Moore.

But Moore Thursday said he asked Club for Growth “to sit it out” on his race because of its previous criticism of former President Donald Trump.

“I thought that was ridiculous,” Moore said. “He is the leader of our party. Like him or not, he is the man right now that I think needs to be the (Republican nominee for president in 2024.”

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