“Rumors and Rumblings” is a weekly feature that runs each Wednesday. It includes short nuggets of information that we glean from conversations throughout the week. Have a tip? Send it here.
1. According to two Yellowhammer sources, ALGOP Chairman Bill Armistead has asked several donors to find out whether or not he would have a shot at landing an appointment to the PSC if Twinkle Cavanaugh wins her race for PSC President. A Cavanaugh win would leave her current PSC seat vacant, and Governor Bentley would make the appointment to fill it. Rep. Jeremy Oden has long been the odds-on favorite for the appointment.
“There is just no way Armistead gets that appointment,” said one Montgomery insider. “But the question that hasn’t been asked yet is, ‘how wide is the gulf between Armistead and Bentley at this point? Governors always send signals as to who they want to be Party Chairman. Armistead became chairman in large part due to the perception that Bentley was supporting him — at least tacitly. Let’s just say that a lot has changed in the last two years.”
2. Team Bentley is gearing up behind-the-scenes for a big push to rally support for Amendment 2 which is on the ballot in November. Their strategy is coming together and folks should expect the Governor to get out in front on this one. “The Bentley political shop has a lot of momentum after Amendment 1 and I’d expect that to carry over into this effort,” one Montgomery insider emailed Yellowhammer. “I expect [the amendment] to pass with relative ease. It has broad support.”
3. The House Republican caucus is holding their Fall fundraiser on Oct. 29. Price levels are $1,000, $2,500 and $5,000. Kate Anderson, LCC is handling the fundraising duties again.
4. Recent polling in the race for PSC President shows Twinkle Cavanaugh with a lead outside the margin of error over Lucy Baxley. Polls are consistently showing Baxley running under 40% and Alabama’s last remaining statewide-elected Democrat is clearly on the ropes.
5. The race for Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court is heating up as Vance is out with a significant ad buy in all of the state’s major markets. The ad has gotten solid reviews from armchair quarterbacks across the state — but Judge Vance is still running into a serious math problem. Consider the following…
In most recent, credible polls, 65% of Alabama voters identify themselves as conservatives. With that in mind, Vance must get all the liberals (10%), all the moderates (25%), and then somehow peel off 25% of self-identified conservatives to get to 51%. Further complicating things, Moore is currently getting the support of over 20% of the black vote, many of whom identify with Moore’s religious leanings and social conservatism. He will likely only get around 10% of the black vote on election day, but any support for Moore among the black community only makes Vance even more of a long-shot.
6. House District 34 candidate David Standridge and House District 30 candidate Mack Butler both raised right at $20,000 at their respective fundraisers last week, further solidifying their frontrunner status going into the special election.