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Weekend Digest- February 24, 2019

Here is your Daily News for February 24, 2019.

1. GOP votes on gas tax

  • The Alabama Republican Party held elections yesterday and voted to re-elect Terry Lathan from Mobile as chairwoman.
  • They also voted to formally oppose raising the state’s gas tax, even without the caveat about decreasing other taxes. That resolution brought by Tom Fredricks was met with significant opposition for its timing and propriety, but ultimately passed.
  • The next biggest topic of conversation at the meeting was the importance of re-electing Donald Trump and to defeat U.S. Sen. Doug Jones in the 2020 election.
  • Jeff Sessions also made an appearance at the meeting and cracked some jokes about his time in the White House.
  • But he made no mentions of trying to win back his senate seat which Doug Jones currently holds.
  • Other positions that were filled at the meeting were the party’s vice-chair which was filled by Limestone County’s John Wahl.
  • John Skipper will represent the first and second congressional districts, Pat Wilson will continue to serve as vice-chair for the third, sixth and seventh congressional districts and state Rep. Andrew Sorrell was re-elected as the fourth and fifth congressional districts’ vice-chair.
  • Party Secretary will go to Lauderdale County’s Josh Dodd and Sallie Bryant was re-elected as party treasurer.
  • You can read more about the meeting from Mike Cason at and Sean Rossfrom Yellow Hammer.

2. Storms hit the South Hard

  • North and Central Alabama saw large amounts of rain this weekend causing Gov. Kay Ivey to declare a state of emergency for 19 counties last night.
  • Some people in the Muscle Shoals, Sheffield and Tuscumbia area were forced to evacuate their homes because of the high waters.
  • The Tennessee River is expected to hit it’s highest levels in decades and since dams were installed due to the amount of rainfall.
  • James Everett, the senior manage for TVA’s River Forecast Center said that they likely saw around 3 to 4.5 inches of rain through Saturday night and due to the already saturated ground from last week’s rainfall, it helped create the flooding.
  • In Mississippi, one small city saw a tornado rip through a commercial district that resulted in one person’s death.
  • Interstate 40 near the Tennessee line with North Carolina along with many other roads and highways were closed due to bad rockslides.
  • You can check out the pictures and videos of the flood damage in Alabama HERE and you can learn about other damage in other southern states HERE.

3. Sanders, Booker and Clinton coming to Selma

  • News broke last week that Hillary Clinton will be attending this year’s Selma Bridge Crossing Jubilee which kicks off on Feb. 28.
  • But now more big name Democrats have been added to that list including Democratic Presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Cory Booker.
  • Sen. Booker from New Jersey is scheduled to give the keynote address at the Brown Chapel AME Church in Selma on March 3.
  • Sen. Sanders from Vermont will give the speech at a unity breakfast that same day as well.
  • The event, of course, marks the 54th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday” when civil rights protestors were beaten by law enforcement when trying to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge on March 7, 1965.
  • The event has always attracted big name political figures like during the 50th anniversary celebration when President Barack Obama gave the keynote speech.
  • This year is no different and with the presidential hopefuls like Sanders and Booker in attendance, the event will no doubt attract many to the small but influential Alabama town.
  • You can read more about it HERE.

4. Democrat-Reporter taken over by new editor

  • The Democrat-Reporter in Linden is under new management.
  • Goodloe Sutton finally handed over the reins after his editorial calling for the Ku Klux Klan to “ride again” garnered national attention and denouncements from state political leaders.
  • Sutton announced on Friday that he would be handing over his paper to Elicia Dexter, an African-American woman.
  • “Ms. Dexter is coming in at a pivotal time for the newspaper and you may have full confidence in her ability to handle these challenging times,” the statement that ran in the Democrat-Reporter said.
  • Dexter’s appointment hopefully puts a good book end to an otherwise ugly and regrettable chapter in Alabama’s journalism history.
  • You can read about the situation HERE from the Montgomery Advertiser’s Melissa Brown and Brian Lyman and from the NYT HERE.

5. Week In Good News

Alabama Documentary Featured at the Oscars
  • Tonight is the Oscars and Alabamians have a chance to be recognized at an event that often overlooks them.
  • “Hale County This Morning, This Evening” is film up for best featured length documentary.
  • It follows the story Daniel Collins and Quincy Bryant, and their families, for five years and shows what it is like to grow up as a young black man in the historic south.
  • The film has been praised by critics all over the U.S. and is being applauded for its unique and groundbreaking style.
  • I for one will be cheering it on to win and I hope you do to.
  • You can read more about the film from Tuscaloosa News.
Teens, Tweets and Civil Rights Cases
  • Thanks to some students at New Jersey’s Hightstown High School, a bill that was sponsored by Sen. Doug Jones became law after the students started tweeting to President Trump and his associates.
  • Most of us know Twitter to be a blackhole were productivity goes to die but sometimes it can provide actual good things for humanity too.
  • In this interesting story, it sheds a light on the background of how the Civil Rights Cold Case Collection Act became law thanks to these teens in New Jersey and it’s a story I highly recommend reading today.
  • Read the whole storyHERE.


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS– Lathan re-elected as GOP party chairwoman
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS-Tornado death confirmed as violent storms smack the South
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Sit-in anniversary to be marked in Montgomery
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama beach towns vow crackdown on unruly spring breakers
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – New stamp honors Alabama’s 200th birthday
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS– Teens tweet Trump, find Senate ally, score civil rights win
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS– Booker, Sanders to speak at Selma commemoration
AL.COM – Gov. Kay Ivey declares state of emergency for flooding.
AL.COM – Flooding leading to home evacuations in northwest Alabama.
AL.COM – Alabama GOP votes to oppose gas tax without offsetting decrease.
AL.COM – Columnist Kyle Whitmire: Donald Watkins’ $1.5 billion question: Was it ever real?
AL.COM – Contributor Frances Coleman: Alabama politics: the stuff bad novels are made of.
HOOVER SUN – Alabama has racist past but potential for more just society, Southern Voices headliner says.
WHNT – Challengers to U.S. Sen. Doug Jones starting to line up for 2020 election.
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Alabama Republican Party elects officers.
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Alabama documentary up for an Oscar this weekend.
 FLORENCE TIMES DAILY – SIDC has funded $32 million in projects since inception.
FLORENCE TIMES DAILY – The Times Daily: Gas tax increase unavoidable.
ANNISTON STAR – The Anniston Star: The hate and anger in Alabama.
ANNISTON STAR – The Anniston Star: Trump loyalty’s role in Alabama’s 2020 Senate race.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Debate shifts, but Medicaid expansion in Alabama still seems far off.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Lawmakers, officials tour educational programs at Elmore prison.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Contributor Stephanie Bryan: Let the people vote for a lottery in Alabama.
DOTHAN EAGLE – The Dothan Eagle: No tears for Muthana.
WASHINGTON POST – Mueller’s probe is expected to end soon, but things are far from over.
WASHINGTON POST – Columnist Max Boot: The Republicans’ big gut-check vote on Tuesday.
WASHINGTON POST – Contributor Jan Miles: Racism isn’t dead. Black Americans still need a ‘Green Book.’
NEW YORK TIMES – Alabama Newspaper at Center of KKK Outrage Gets Black Female Editor
NEW YORK TIMES – Ole Miss Players Kneel in Response to Pro-Confederate Rally
NEW YORK TIMES – Health Care and Insurance Industries Mobilize to Kill ‘Medicare for All’
NEW YORK TIMES – How America Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Deficits and Debt
NEW YORK TIMES – Seeking a Haven in H.B.C.U.s and Single-Sex Colleges

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