The prevailing wisdom in the First Congressional District is that it’s going to be an all-GOP race with no Democrats willing to offer themselves up as a lamb going to the slaughter in the Republican-leaning district.
But that might not actually be the case.
Although no Democrats have publicly announced their candidacy with a press conference or release, there is one Democrat who appears to be taking the necessary steps to run.
According to public documents filed with the Federal Election Commission, Burton LeFlore of Mobile filed a “statement of candidacy” with the FEC on July 1. He listed his candidate committee as “LeFlore for Congress” and indicated that he would be seeking the Democratic nomination for Congress in Alabama’s First District. The LeFlore campaign also has a Twitter account that to this point only includes retweets of other people in its feed. The account’s bio says that “LeFlore is a candidate for the US Congressional seat in the 1st District of Alabama.”
LeFlore ran as an independent for the Alabama House of Representatives in District 97 earlier this year in an attempt to fill the seat previously held by Yvonne Kennedy, who died in December of last year.
LeFlore’s father, John LeFlore, was an influential leader in the civil rights movement in Alabama, and according to AL.com was a founding member of The Non-Partisan Voters League. That, LeFlore told AL.com, played a major role in his decision to run as independent.
“[My father] was a firm believer that voters shouldn’t vote for the straight Democratic or Republican ticket. He believed that people should vote for whoever best represented their interests, and I believe that, too,” LeFlore said.
He also said that the crowded field of Democrats in the District 97 race led him to run as an independent so his name would automatically appear on the general election ballot. The AL01 field of Democrats is currently empty, making LeFlore the party’s nominee if no other Democrats qualify by Monday’s 5 p.m. deadline, assuming he is indeed running.
LeFlore is a graduate of Florida State University’s law school and currently runs a real estate business in the Mobile area. He did not immediately respond to a request for comment for this story, but we will update when we hear from him.