A Governor’s Battle

With Friday’s deadline to file in Alabama, Gov. Kay Ivey will face three well-funded challengers in June.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey
AP Photo/Brynn Anderson
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Zach C. Cohen
Feb. 9, 2018, 9:31 a.m.

With Alabama’s filing deadline passing Friday, the primary field is set among challengers hoping to unseat one of America’s newest governors: Republican Kay Ivey.

Ivey, the former lieutenant governor who took over for former Gov. Robert Bentley last year, stockpiled $2.1 million as of Jan. 31 for her campaign and remains decently popular, according to recent online polling from Morning Consult.

While the primary field shrunk following her decision to seek a full term, Ivey still faces three challengers in the June primary, barring a surprise entrance by Roy Moore. Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle slightly outraised Ivey last month, but finished with less cash on hand at $1.2 million. With their six-figure warchests, state Sen. Bill Hightower and evangelist Scott Dawson round out the field.

Republicans can expect a familiar messaging matchup. Ivey is touting her experience serving as treasurer and working in the private sector. Battle highlights his work on economic development and has taken aim at “corruption”in a capital that has seen leaders of all three branches resign in disgrace in the past two years.

Four Democratic candidates also filed by Friday’s deadline, with Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox and former Alabama Supreme Court Justice Sue Bell Cobb the better funded of the field. The winner, while invigorated by Sen. Doug Jones’s victory, will still face a favored Republican nominee in November.

— Zach C. Cohen


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