All political eyes will be on Alabama on Tuesday, as Republicans and conservatives around the state vote for the GOP nominee to be their senator.
Republicans and conservatives in Alabama go to the polls on Tuesday to pick the man or woman they want to succeed Attorney General Jeff Sessions. A field of over a dozen Republicans and Democrats will be winnowed down to just a few.
If no candidate in either the GOP primary or the Democratic primary finishes with 50 percent of the vote, the top two candidates in a given party will advance to a runoff on September 26.
Here’s NTK Network’s breakdown of the hotly-contested Republican race, which is a three-way battle between Sen. Luther Strange (R-AL), former Chief Justice Roy Moore (R-AL), and Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL).
Neither is expected to earn 50 percent outright, so the top two will advance to the September runoff.
Strange, who was appointed to the U.S. Senate seat after Jeff Sessions left to lead the Justice Department, has received the endorsement of President Trump, who has tweeted twice about Strange in the last several days:
Senator Luther Strange has done a great job representing the people of the Great State of Alabama. He has my complete and total endorsement!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 9, 2017
Luther Strange of the Great State of Alabama has my endorsement. He is strong on Border & Wall, the military, tax cuts & law enforcement.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 14, 2017
Strange is running on support of Trump’s agenda, and endorsements from conservative groups like the National Rifle Association (NRA) and the National Right to Life.
Moore, twice benched as chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, currently leads Strange by less than four points, according to a RealClearPolitics average of the most recent polls.
Moore is known for his outspoken beliefs on same-sex marriage and religion, and for colorful statements like last week when he said he may be “akin” to Vladimir Putin on the issue of same-sex marriage.
If Moore makes the runoff, his non-profit organization the Foundation for Moral Law may become an issue. The Senate Leadership Fund (SLF) released an ad this month criticizing the compensation Moore and his wife took from the non-profit:
Brooks is a House Freedom Caucus member who has touted his endorsements from talk radio and Twitter personalities, but has come under fire for attacks on President Trump late into last year’s campaign.
Brooks corrected a radio host in October 2016 who said Brooks was voting for Trump, saying “I didn’t say that. I said I’m gonna vote for a Republican that is on the ballot.” This was after the controversial “Access Hollywood” video came out.
Brooks also suggested last year that Trump is worse than Obama on immigration, touted his membership in the liberal Sierra Club for years, and, more recently, questioned the intelligence of both President Trump and his own voters.
Not to be outdone, Brooks suggested as recently as, well, Monday, that Trump is not a conservative:
Brooks may claim support for Trump, but he makes it clear that his true loyalty is to principles, not personalities.That makes him an outlier in a party whose voters have largely joined the Cult of Trump. I asked him if he thought Trump was a conservative, and he answered with a tight smile: “I don’t know.” Why, then, was he so eager to align himself with Trump now, I asked?
Brooks is lagging behind Moore and Strange, but no matter what happens Tuesday’s primary results will be ones to watch.
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