“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. ALGOP Chairman Bill Armistead has been making the rounds at the State House this week including spending time with former GOP Senator Harri Anne Smith. In 2008, Sen. Smith and Rep. Jay Love squared off in the GOP primary for the U.S. House seat in Alabama’s 2nd congressional district. After losing to Love, Smith endorsed Democrat Bobby Bright. This violated GOP state party rules which bar a GOP elected official from endorsing a candidate from another party when a Republican is in the race. As a result, Smith was denied Republican ballot access in 2010 by the GOP state executive committee. She went on to be reelected as an independent. However, this week the rumor mill was kicked into overdrive with talk of Armistead considering helping Smith run again as a Republican in 2014.
2. A Democrat Senator is strongly considering switching parties and becoming a Republican. Will the Senate GOP caucus add another member before the 2012 session ends?
3. Our Christian Coalition of Alabama / AEA story has received significant feedback over the last 24 hours. However, Christian Coalition Chairman Randy Brinson’s over-the-top statements apparently caught the attention of more folks than just us. Insiders are chirping about Gov. Bentley reaching out to Brinson and urging him to lay off charter schools and education policy director Emily Schultz during his Christian Coalition press conference on Tuesday.
4. Bob Riley stirred things up last year after registering as a lobbyist. Now his work is starting to become more visible. He was seen around the State House this week lobbying for one of his marquee clients.