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Alabama U.S. Senate poll focusing on Miss America ’95

Add former Miss Alabama and Miss America Heather Whitestone McCallum to the list of potential Republican U.S. Senate candidates hoping to challenge incumbent Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL) in 2020.

A poll currently being conducted, which was provided Monday to Yellowhammer News by members of the public, tests name identification and multiple biography questions on Whitestone, as well as various head-to-head matchups (with the lone constant being her in each one).

The poll is reportedly being conducted by RPM Research, who only describe themselves as “a national research firm.” It is not clear if this is a private company or a polling apparatus connected to a political organization.

Whitestone, a Dothan native, was selected as the 1995 Miss America on September 17, 1994. She made history as the first deaf Miss America, having fully lost her hearing when she was 18-months old. Whitestone underwent a cochlear implant surgery to partially restore her hearing in 2002.

The poll conducts ballot tests in several scenarios: 1). Rep. Gary Palmer (AL-6), Rep. Martha Roby (AL-2), Whitestone, Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh (R-Anniston), Rep. Bradley Byrne (AL-1), Lt. Governor Will Ainsworth (R-AL) and Rep. Mo Brooks (AL-5); 2). Byrne, Whitestone and Brooks; 3). Whitestone, former Chief Justice Roy Moore and Byrne; 4). The same as the first poll but given after pushing Whitestone’s biography.

The biography questions on Whitestone are as follows:

If you knew Heather Whitestone McCallum had overcome physical disabilities, including losing her ability to hear when she was 18 months old, to become a published author, philanthropist, and advocate for conservative causes, would you be more or less likely to vote for her?

If you knew Heather Whitestone McCallum moved from Georgia back to her home state of Alabama just so she could run for elected office, would you be more or less likely to vote for her?

If you knew Heather Whitestone McCallum was endorsed by former US Speaker Newt Gingrich and former US Senator Bob Dole, would you be more or less likely to vote for her?

If you knew Heather Whitestone McCallum had served as an advisor to the National Council on Disability, National Institutes of Health, and the Helen Keller Foundation for Research and Education, would you be more or less likely to vote for her?

Whitestone did not immediately return a request for comment.

She has authored multiple faith-centric books, including “Listening With My Heart,” “Believing The Promise,” “Let God Surprise You” and “Heavenly Crowns.” She is a graduate of Berry High School (now Hoover High School) and Jacksonville State University.

Whitestone, age 46, has lived in Georgia for over two decades, having moved there after marrying her husband, John McCallum. She and John met when they were both serving as aides to then-U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA). John ran unsuccessfully for Congress himself in 2014. She and her husband have three children.

The former Miss Alabama starred in one of his campaign ads that cycle, which can be viewed below.

Whitestone was also one of the former Miss America winners to vocally campaign for change in the organization in recent years.

Read more about her here.

Byrne is currently the only declared Republican candidate in the 2020 U.S. Senate race. He has announced public campaign stops in Chilton and Elmore Counties on Tuesday and Walker County on Thursday this week.

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

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