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Weekend Digest – November 22, 2020

Good afternoon and Happy Sunday!
Here’s your Daily News for November 22.

1. Alvin Holmes dies at 81

  • Former state Rep. Alvin Holmes, who had been the longest-serving member of the Alabama House of Representatives before his 2018 defeat, has died. He was 81.
  • Alabama House of Representatives spokesman Clay Redden confirmed Holmes’ death Saturday.
  • Holmes, one of the first African Americans elected to the Alabama Legislature after the civil rights era, was for decades a fixture at the State House. His political career included battles over issues ranging from removing Jim Crow language from the state Constitution to taking the Confederate flag off of the Alabama Capitol. With his trademark outspokenness, he had panache for humorous, and sometimes controversial, moments.
  • Holmes was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1974, just four years after African Americans — who hadn’t served since Reconstruction — returned to the Legislature.
  • “I came to the Statehouse out of the civil rights movement. I said I wanted to go up there and make a change,” Holmes said after his defeat in 2018.
  • Read more HERE.


2. Marshall sues over Confederate statue move

  • Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall has filed a court challenge over Madison County’s removal of a Confederate soldier statue at its courthouse.
  • Marshall announced the lawsuit Friday, arguing the statue’s movement to a Huntsville cemetery violates a 2017 state law called the Alabama Memorial Preservation Act, which is aimed at protecting Confederate monuments.
  • “It looks like someone is finally enforcing the law,” John Scales, a member of Heritage Protection of North Alabama, which wants the statue returned to the courthouse, told WBRC-TV.
  • David Odom, president of the Tennessee Valley Progressive Alliance said the law should never have been passed.
  • “If the local government says, ‘We want a Confederate monument off our courthouse square,’ it should be up to the local government,” Odom told WBRC.
  • Read more HERE.


3. Alabama cities canceling Christmas parades as pandemic rages

  • Part of the holiday season will be missing in some Alabama cities this year as officials cancel Christmas parades because of the coronavirus pandemic.
  • The cities of Birmingham and Anniston called off their parades in recent days as caseloads and hospitalizations increase across the state. The cities of Bessemer, Gadsden and Madison were among those that previously called off their Christmas parades citing safety concerns over the virus.
  • Some places are still planning events like tree lightings that residents can watch online, and other places are creating alternative events.
  • Hartselle plans a contest in which residents can compete for prizes by decorating their homes. Tuscaloosa announced a “reverse” parade in which people can stay in their cars and drive past decorated floats in a park, but organizers canceled it citing low participation.
  • Cases of COVID-19 are increasing rapidly across the state as a new wave of illness sweeps across much of the nation.
  • Read the full report HERE.


4. Trump’s legal team alleged vote fraud, but courts found none

  • As they searched for ways to salvage President Donald Trump’s reelection bid, his campaign pursued a dizzying game of legal hopscotch across six states that centered on the biggest prize of all: Pennsylvania.
  • The strategy may have played well in front of television cameras and on talk radio. But it has proved a disaster in court, where judges uniformly rejected claims of vote fraud.
  • In a ruling late Saturday, U.S. District Judge Matthew Brann — a Republican and Federalist Society member in central Pennsylvania — compared the campaign’s legal arguments to “Frankenstein’s Monster,” concluding that Trump’s team offered only “speculative accusations,” not proof of rampant corruption.
  • Brann, in his ruling, said he expected the campaign to present formidable evidence of rampant corruption as it sought to nullify millions of votes. Instead, he said, the campaign presented “strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations.”
  • Trump could appeal the ruling to the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia, but that court may have tipped its hand. In its Nov. 13 ruling, the court called it “indisputable in our democratic process: that the lawfully cast vote of every citizen must count.”
  • Read more about the long legal fight HERE.


5. Tide and Tigers earn big wins ahead of Iron Bowl

No. 23 Auburn overcame a slow start to beat Tennessee 30-17
  • Smoke Monday returned an interception 100 yards for a touchdown and No. 23 Auburn overcame a slow start to beat Tennessee 30-17 on Saturday night.
  • Auburn (5-2, 5-2 Southeastern Conference) fell behind 10-0 to Tennessee (2-5, 2-5) and dealt with injuries to star running back Tank Bigsby and its two starting offensive tackles. The Tigers were playing their first game in 21 days after a scheduled off week and the postponement of a game at Mississippi State.
  • “Quality win against a talented team,” Auburn coach Gus Malzahn said. “We hadn’t played in 21 days. The first quarter we were sleep-walking a little bit. We had the interception in the end zone. In the second quarter, we woke up and started playing Auburn football.”
  • Read more HERE.
Smith, No. 1 Alabama dominate short-handed Kentucky, 63-3
  • Alabama didn’t quite look like itself at first after an extended period on the sidelines, but it scarcely made a difference on the scoreboard.
  • DeVonta Smith caught nine passes for 144 yards and set the Southeastern Conference career record with two more touchdowns in the top-ranked Crimson Tide’s 63-3 victory over short-handed Kentucky on Saturday.
  • “I think we played better and better and better as the game went on,” coach Nick Saban said.
  • And the score got bigger and bigger and bigger.
  • Mac Jones passed for 230 yards and two touchdowns and Najee Harris ran for a pair of scores for the Tide (7-0 SEC), both in less than three quarters. A slow start turned into a breezy return from a three-week layoff after LSU was forced to call off last week’s scheduled game because of COVID-19 troubles.
  • Read more HERE.
Middle Tennessee beats Troy 20-17
  • TROY, Ala. (AP) — Chaton Mobley and Frank Peasant had touchdown runs and Middle Tennessee shut out Troy for most of the second half for a 20-17 victory on Saturday.
  • Troy (4-4) was without second-year coach Chip Lindsey, who announced Friday that he had tested positive for COVID-19.
  • Mobley scored on a 4-yard run and Peasant a 5-yarder in the first half, each capping long drives for Middle Tennessee (3-6). Crews Holt’s 22-yard field goal stretched the Blue Raiders’ lead to 17-10 at halftime, and his 49-yard field goal made it 20-10 with 5:20 remaining.
  • Asher O’Hara was 19-of-23 passing for 210 yards and added 86 yards rushing on 25 carries for Middle Tennessee. Mobley finished with 57 yards rushing and Peasant had 25.
  • Gunnar Watson’s 8-yard touchdown pass to Khalil McClain capped an 11-play, 85-yard drive for the Trojans with 28 seconds left. Watson was 25 of 39 for 300 yards passing but threw two interceptions. McClain had six catches for 92 yards.
Georgia State powers to 31-14 defeat of South Alabama
  • MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — Cornelious Brown IV passed for 334 yards and Tucker Gregg rushed for three touchdowns — both career highs — and Georgia State beat South Alabama 31-14 on Saturday.
  • Sam Pinckney hauled in catches of 65 and 43 yards, each setting up the Panthers (4-4, 3-4 Sun Belt Conference) with first-and-goals that each resulted in a Gregg rushing TD. Pinckney had five receptions for a career-best 176 yards.
  • Gregg scored on runs of 3, 33 and 1 yards. His 33-yarder came as he raced untouched through a huge hole in the middle of the line for a 21-14 Georgia State lead.
  • Michael Hayes added a 23-yard field goal — a career first — early in the fourth quarter as Georgia State took a 24-14 lead.
  • The Panthers followed with a defensive series that sacked Desmond Trotter twice, and regained possession when Jacorey Crawford broke up a fourth-and-11 pass attempt near midfield. Trotter finished 25-for-43 for 211 yards.
  • The Panthers sacked Trotter seven times to tie the school record.
  • Georgia State dominated the offensive stats with 556 yards to 324 but turned the ball over four times, including three Brown picks, allowing South Alabama (3-6, 2-4) to stay close.
North Alabama outmatched by No. 8 BYU
  • PROVO, Utah (AP) — BYU relied on efficient offense to demolish another overmatched opponent.
  • Tyler Allgeier ran for a career-high 141 yards and two touchdowns and the no. 8 Cougars routed North Alabama 66-14 on Saturday to improve to 9-0.
  • Allgeier had his fourth 100-yard game of the season. Zach Wilson threw for 212 yards and four touchdowns before halftime and added 33 yards rushing. He had a season-high 256.3 QB rating against the FCS Lions.
  • BYU scored touchdowns on all six first-half drives. The Cougars rolled up 394 total yards and averaged 11.3 yards per play before halftime.



ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alvin Holmes dies at 81; had served decades in Alabama House
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama attorney general sues over Confederate statue move
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama cities canceling Christmas parades as pandemic rages
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Trump’s legal team alleged vote fraud, but courts found none
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – No. 23 Auburn overcame a slow start to beat Tennessee 30-17
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Smith, No. 1 Alabama rout short-handed Kentucky, 63-3
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – New poll shows voters approve of state’s pandemic response (ADN Insider subscription)
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Poll: Voters favor legislative action on unfinished business (ADN Insider subscription)
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Daily News Digest – November 20, 2020
AL.COM – Longtime lawmaker, civil rights advocate Alvin Holmes dies
AL.COM – Huntsville food bank closes temporarily because of COVID-19
AL.COM – How ecotourism can help west Alabama take flight
AL.COM – Alabama National Guard will pay members, retirees to help recruit
AL.COM – UA will not require COVID tests for most students before spring term
AL.COM – Alabama just had its worst week for coronavirus since the pandemic began
AL.COM – Concede nothing: Trump’s actions have played out before in Alabama politics
AL.COM – Columnist Frances Coleman: The importance of being thankful for what we’ve got
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – Birmingham Promise gives Birmingham City Schools grad promising future
BAMA POLITICS – Columnist Clete Wetli: For Democrats, A Bigger Battle Ahead
DECATUR DAILY – Ready to Soar: Decatur teen a member of inaugural group of female Eagle Scouts
TIMES DAILY – Empty Table Fund proceeds serve myriad of needs
TIMES DAILY – The Times Daily: Virus has shut door to open dialogue
GADSDEN TIMES – Etowah County Schools purchase more Chromebooks
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Alvin Holmes, longtime outspoken Alabama legislator who fought for equality, dies
DOTHAN EAGLE – Dothan exhibits growth with $1.7 million surplus in new fiscal year’s sales tax revenue
DOTHAN EAGLE – The Dothan Eagle: Bright stars.
WASHINGTON POST – In scathing opinion, federal judge dismisses Trump campaign lawsuit in Pennsylvania
WASHINGTON POST – Trump privately plots his next act — including a potential 2024 run
WASHINGTON POST – Trump’s quest to overturn election runs into quiet resistance from local and state Republicans
WASINGTON POST – As U.S. coronavirus cases soar toward 200,000 a day, holiday travel is surging
WASHINGTON POST – Judge slaps down Trump appointee who has sought to reshape Voice of America and related agencies
WASHINGTON POST – Trump campaign requests recount of hand-recounted results in Georgia, which is unlikely to change outcome
NEW YORK TIMES – How Trump Hopes to Use Party Machinery to Retain Control of the G.O.P.
NEW YORK TIMES – Contributor Clauldia Sahm: Is Trump Trying to Take the Economy Down With Him?
NEW YORK TIMES – A Push Emerges for the First Native American Interior Secretary
NEW YORK TIMES – The New York Times: America Is Letting the Coronavirus Rage Through Prisons

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