We’re very pleased to introduce the eight (8) Democrats who have qualified to run in the Special Election for the seat vacated by now-Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
Important: a new state law prohibits voting in one party’s primary and the other party’s runoff. If you’re crossing over to vote against an undesirable candidate in one party, you won’t even be able to vote in your preferred party’s runoff. With eight Democrats and eleven Republicans in this race, chances are very high that there will be an important runoff for both parties.
Primary – August 15, 2017
(deadline to register to vote: July 31; absentee ballot application due Aug. 10, submission due Aug. 14)
Runoff – September 26, 2017
General Election - December 12, 2017
If you’ll miss any of these election dates, don’t forget to Vote Absentee!
Democratic Candidates, US Senate, 2017
Dr. Will Boyd is no stranger to politics – he’s chairman of the Lauderdale County Democratic Executive Committee and ran an unsuccessful but active race in 2016 as the Democratic nominee against Mo Brooks in north Alabama's 5th Congressional District.
A minister from Florence, Boyd is interested in letting voters know what he doesn’t support, reporter Lee Roop writes.
“I’m not somebody who wants to take guns away,” Boyd said. “I’m not somebody who wants to kill babies."
PO Box 475
Florence, AL 35631-0475
Phone: (256) 856-0123
Vann Caldwell was just 19 years old when he ran his first political campaign – an unsuccessful bid to become Talladega’s mayor. Running for public office is in his blood, AL.com reporter Howard Koplowitz writes.
He followed that loss with a few more unsuccessful campaigns, but won his first political victory in 2016 when he was elected Talladega County constable, Beat 5.
If elected, his top priority would be growing the economy, which he says would “cause a chain reaction" in helping his other major issues: Education and the military and homeland security.
417 Coffee St.
Talladega, AL 35160
Jason Fisher’s political journey began with a personal tragedy. The unexpected death of his wife five years ago left him as a single parent to a child with special needs. He was thrust into the complex health insurance system as a result, and he’s running for Senate on a mission to fix it.
Fisher was born in Iowa and moved to Alabama in 2004. He has worked in marketing and development, but hopes his experience with health care will help him as a senator. He doesn’t have much political experience, but he doesn’t see that as a bad thing.
"I feel like it was the right time for a new voice to be heard. The next generation of leadership has to step up and take control."
PO Box 3105
Mobile, AL 36652-3105
Phone: (251) 275-5529
Michael Hansen so far seems to resonate with supporters online. And his platform sounds more like that of Bernie Sanders than Jeff Sessions, reporter Dennis Pillion notes. The 35-year-old, openly gay nonprofit exec from Birmingham has made a career in environmental advocacy. He supports increasing the minimum wage and transitioning to all renewable energy sources, among other policies.
And he's running for U.S. Senate. In Alabama.
He calls himself "Alabama's progressive candidate," a title he's proud of even in a state as conservative as Alabama. Hansen is confident he can appeal to more than just the Bernie Sanders crowd.
2160 Highland Ave. S., Suite 144
Birmingham, AL 35205
Phone: (205) 607-0435
Jones, like everyone on this list, faces the uphill battle of being elected as a Democrat in a deeply red state. He’s up for the challenge, however, and says it’s time we moved past the "meaningless rhetoric" used by "pandering" politicians.
Jones, a 63-year-old former U.S. Attorney, is best-known for the prosecution of Thomas Blanton and Bobby Frank Cherry. They were convicted of murder for killing four young girls in the 1963 Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing.
PO Box 131025
Birmingham, AL 35213
Phone: (205) 703-4785
Robert Kennedy, Jr.
Robert Kennedy Jr. definitely has name recognition, even if he isn’t one of those Kennedys. But he remains a bit of a mystery. When contacted by AL.com reporter John Sharp, he wouldn’t confirm what he did for a living. He says he wants to keep a low profile.
He bills himself as a “conservative Democrat,” and is both pro-gun and pro-life. He’s the “faith, God, guns and freedom” Democrat. Kennedy has no prior political experience, but says he’s ready for the job.
I'm the best positioned of all the candidates in the entire field, whether Republicans or Democrats, to navigate through the bureaucracy,” he said.
312-T Schillinger Rd. #16
Mobile, AL 36608
Phone: (251) 272-9461
Brian McGee has a whole lot of experience in a whole lot of different careers. He's been a farmer, a soldier, a ditchdigger, a teacher, a small business owner and a nonprofit director. So why not Senator?
The 70-year-old Vietnam veteran thinks the United States should consider some form of mandatory service following high school.
"We have to come up with ideas that kids can provide some service and acknowledge that by living in this country, they've been given something," McGee said. "Being an American comes with responsibilities."
516 Lee Rd 965
Valley, AL 36854
Phone: (334) 476-1432
Perhaps more than any of the other Democrats in this field, Charles Nana knows what a Senatorial race takes. He finished second in last year’s Democratic primary for U.S. Senate, earning more than 100,000 votes.
The 51-year-old has his work cut out for him, this time. He lives in Birmingham but works in Nashville, and he’s facing a Democratic field that is potentially tougher than last time around. But he knows why he’s trying again.
"I'm trying to appeal to the goodness in each and every one of us,” Nana said.
5386 Cottage Lane
Hoover, AL 35266
Phone: (205) 960-8111