Josh Goodman is a former staff writer for GOVERNING..E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Another week, another competitive special election in Alabama. Last week, Democrats held an open seat on turf that leans Republican in presidential elections, but tends to prefer Democrats in state politics. Can the party do it again today?
This open seat is in the 7th Senate District, where Parker Griffith departed when he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in November. The race sounds close, but Democrats are favored, according to the Huntsville Times:
Democrats and political analysts also say the race will come down to turnout. If state Rep. Laura Hall, the Democrat, can motivate her supporters to go to the polls, she'll likely go from the House to the Senate.
If not, the race will be a toss-up between her and Republican businessman Paul Sanford.
Doc's Political Parlor has more details:
I hear a little more optimism about the election among Democrats than I do among Republicans, though we know that turnout is the key for a special election. Republicans are saying that they did as well as or better than the Democrats in getting absentee ballots returned. I hear anecdotally that Democrats have 70 or 80 people up there now knocking on doors of residents, and they believe they are ahead in the ground game. On the other side, a Republican close to the campaign tells the Parlor that they knocked on over 1000 doors on Saturday alone, and that they have 20-30 people out today and tomorrow continuing to go door to door.
Rumors, rumors... If you are interested in rumors about polls, AEA supposedly has a poll showing Hall ahead. And there are rumors that a poll done for the GOP shows a statistical dead heat between the candidates.
One dynamic that makes this election worth watching: Hall is an African-American who stands a good chance of winning a seat that is not majority-minority.
GOVERNING Politics is the place for news and analysis on campaigns and elections. If there's a ballot measure in California, a legislative election in Alabama, a mayoral election in Anchorage or a governor's race in Rhode Island, GOVERNING Politics probably is writing about it. We love everything about state and local politics, from polls and campaign ads to policy debates and demographic trends.