By Morgan Bryce
With the March 3 primaries looming, former US Attorney General Jeff Sessions made a campaign stop in East Alabama last week to speak to members of the Opelika Rotary Club.
One of Alabama’s two state senators from 1997 to 2017, Sessions most recently served as the US Attorney General under President Donald Trump. Based on current polling, Sessions is one of the leading candidates to secure the Republican nomination and vie for the Senate seat currently occupied by Democrat Doug Jones.
Following an introduction by Opelika City Administrator Joey Motley, Sessions started the discussion by sharing about his connections to the area and longtime friendships with local dignitaries including Mayor Gary Fuller and Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones.
“There’s going to be a lot of Republican votes cast in this area,” Sessions said. “It’s 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.”
Since resigning from his post as US Attorney General on Nov. 7, 2018, Sessions said “a lot of thought and prayer” and desire to help fellow Alabamians led him to enter the race.
Sessions did not shy away from his continued support of President Trump despite the rocky end to their political relationship. He praised the president’s accomplishments, including the appointments of numerous conservative judges across the country and economic growth.
“He’s honored a lot of what he promised to do to an extraordinary degree. The economy is moving well and we’re just now beginning to see real progress at the border (with wall construction and security),” Sessions said.
If elected, Sessions said he would like to continue helping President Trump check items off his agenda.
Following his talk, Sessions fielded questions from the audience, touching on a number of topics ranging from education and Second Amendment rights to the recent US takedown of Iran’s military leader Qasem Soleimani and why most politicians are avoiding conversations of working to lower the national debt.
“People don’t want to talk about it because it’s very hard to deal with and (could) cause some very tough decisions to be made … and that’s people in both parties,” Sessions said.
Before leaving, Sessions thanked the crowd and asked them to “humbly consider voting for him” in advance of the coming election season.
“Thank you for allowing me to serve. I’ll do my best to be worthy of the confidence if you allow me to return,” Sessions said.