By Will Fairless
Associate Editor

The Alabama Primary Runoff election will be held on July 14 and Lee County has two races on the Republican ballot.

Senate Race

The runoff election for the Republican primary in the Senate race is between former senator Jeff Sessions and former Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville. The winner of the runoff will take on democratic senator Doug Jones on Nov. 3.

The runoff election is the result of no candidate getting a majority of votes in the March 3 primary election; the top two vote-getters, Sessions and Tuberville, have advanced to a runoff. Alabama is one of ten states that conduct primary runoff elections. During a January campaign stop at the Opelika Rotary Club, he said: “Thereʼs going to be a lot of Republican votes cast in this area. Itʼs doing so well economically, Auburn University is just this engine of strength financially, but there are a lot of other things out there. A lot of businesses attracting real growth … Auburn and Opelika have become a key part of Alabama.”
He added, “Thank you for allowing me to serve. Iʼll do my best to be worthy of the confidence if you allow me to return.” Both Sessions quotes were previously published in the Observer.

In an interview with the Observer last year, Tuberville said, “Everybody is wanting to know why Iʼm doing this. They say, ʻyou donʼt need the moneyʼ or ʻyou donʼt need the hassleʼ or ʻitʼs a thankless jobʼ … but Iʼm doing it for the people, not myself.”

He added: “One of the main, if not the most important, issues brought up to me by people on the campaign trail is education. Itʼs something Iʼve done for 40 years and Iʼm very concerned by what Iʼm seeing. The secret to freedom is education. If people receive a true education, they learn civics and learn what this country is about – how and why we started and how we got to this point.”

Court of Criminal Appeals Judge, Place No. 2

Also on the ballot for the runoff election are Beth Kellum and William Smith, who were the top contenders for the Criminal Appeals Judge, Place No. 2. Vellum is seeking her third term on the court in Place 2. Kellum served as a prosecutor, criminal defense attorney and appellate court staff attorney prior to her 2008 election to the Criminal Appeals Court.

Smith is a Florence, Alabama, attorney and former Lauderdale County Commissioner. There was a six point margin between Kellum and Smith during the primary election on March 3. 

There is no Democratic nominee for this position.