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ALGOP bans AEA donations for some candidates

The Alabama Republican Party voted to ban GOP school board and superintendent candidates from accepting campaign donations from the Alabama Education Association. The vote was one of several actions the ALGOP took at its summer meeting Saturday.

The meeting capped a weekend that started with a visit Friday night from former President Donald Trump that raked in $1.2 million in contributions for the party.

Among other resolutions passed were a condemnation of President Biden’s taxpayer-funded abortion policy for the military, and a process governing Alabama’s 2024 GOP presidential primary delegates. 

Between enthusiasm for school choice and negativity about the influence being wielded by the teachers’ lobby, the AEA was in the crosshairs of executive committee members. The organization donated $1.5 million to state legislative candidates in 2022. 

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A clear majority of committee members approved strengthening a rule on the books after  a back and forth over the contribution ban being extended to state legislative candidates, ultimately passing 68% to 32%.

“One of my goals with this Standing Rule Amendment is making sure our school board and superintendent candidates are not dependent on any special interest group,” ALGOP Chairman John Wahl said. “With that in mind, I have already committed that the Party will step in and replace any funding lost should it become necessary.”

The buzz surrounding Friday night’s fundraising total was a milestone in the state party’s ability to scale up operations and support candidates. Wahl emphasized to committee members during debate the party is in an “extremely strong” financial position and that candidates need not look to the AEA for financial backing. 

Moving forward, any Republican candidate seeking office who accepts contributions would face a denial of ballot access and any unsolicited contributions would need to be returned within seven days. 

RELATED: Alabama Congressional delegation back in the state

Sen. Tommy Tuberville’s unrelenting focus on President Biden’s military abortion policy was also center stage. Committee members passed a resolution condemning Biden’s policy and commending Tuberville. An earlier form of the resolution more prominently highlighted praise for the senator.

“The Hyde Amendment was enacted as part of the federal budget in 2022 and bars the use of federal funds to support abortions at any level, and … The Biden administration has gone against the principles of the Hyde Amendment by ordering the use of federal funds to pay for time off from work and travel costs to obtain abortions for both service members and their dependents,” the resolution said. 

“The Alabama Republican Party calls on the Biden Administration to reverse the policy of using taxpayer money to fund abortion related expenses against the will of the people, and thanks Senator Tommy Tuberville for his stand against this flawed policy.”

This resolution was passed 99% to 1%. 

ALGOP also passed its presidential preference primary process, which details how Alabama’s presidential delegates will be allocated for the 2024 GOP primary.

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Alabama will have 50 delegates to the Republican National Convention: ALGOP’s three members of the Republican National Committee; 26 statewide at-large delegates; and 21 delegates allocated by congressional district.

Notably, the 26 statewide at-large Republican delegates will be awarded to the first place candidate if that candidate receives more than 50% of the vote in the state’s Super Tuesday primary.

Grayson Everett is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @Grayson270

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