July brought us a break from primary elections, but the pause is nearly over and we’re easing back into politics. Yesterday, primary runoff elections were held in Alabama. The race with the most dramatic – some might say “surreal” – twists involved four-term GOP Congressional incumbent Martha Roby. She won only 39% of the vote in the primary, but in the runoff, she crushed challenger Bobby Bright by a 2-1 margin. The back story:
Alabama voted for Trump by nearly 63% in 2016, and Roby angered her constituents by condemning Trump after the “Access Hollywood” tape release incident. Bright challenged her from the right, claiming he would be a more reliable Trump-supporting conservative, even though he’s a former Democrat who supported Nancy Pelosi when he previously held that seat (he claims the party moved so far left, it left him behind.) Meanwhile, Trump and Vice President Mike Pence overlooked Roby’s earlier criticism and endorsed her, noting that despite their differences, she consistently voted to support his agenda. In her victory speech, Rep. Roby thanked both Trump and Pence.
So to sum up: largely thanks to Trump’s endorsement, a woman who condemned Trump as a sexist beat a former Pelosi-supporting Democrat who blasted her for not being as big a pro-Trump conservative as he is. Or as Trump would sum that up: “WINNING!”