The Wire

  • New tunnel, premium RV section at Talladega Superspeedway on schedule despite weather

    Excerpt:

    Construction of a new oversized vehicle tunnel and premium RV infield parking section at Talladega Superspeedway is still on schedule to be completed in time for the April NASCAR race, despite large amounts of rainfall and unusual groundwater conditions underneath the track.

    Track Chairman Grant Lynch, during a news conference Wednesday at the track, said he’s amazed the general contractor, Taylor Corporation of Oxford, has been able to keep the project on schedule.

    “The amount of water they have pumped out of that and the extra engineering they did from the original design, basically to keep that tunnel from floating up out of the earth, was remarkable,” Lynch said.

  • Alabama workers built 1.6M engines in 2018 to add auto horsepower

    Excerpt:

    Alabama’s auto workers built nearly 1.6 million engines last year, as the state industry continues to carve out a place in global markets with innovative, high-performance parts, systems and finished vehicles.

    Last year also saw major new developments in engine manufacturing among the state’s key players, and more advanced infrastructure is on the way in the coming year.

    Hyundai expects to complete a key addition to its engine operations in Montgomery during the first half of 2019, while Honda continues to reap the benefits of a cutting-edge Alabama engine line installed several years ago.

  • Groundbreaking on Alabama’s newest aerospace plant made possible through key partnerships

    Excerpt:

    Political and business leaders gathered for a groundbreaking at Alabama’s newest aerospace plant gave credit to the formation of the many key partnerships that made it possible.

    Governor Kay Ivey and several other federal, state and local officials attended the event which celebrated the construction of rocket engine builder Blue Origin’s facility in Huntsville.

8 hours ago

7 Things: Straight-ticket voting is really big in Alabama, Doug Jones is proving he is a loyal Democrat, markets hit record numbers on good vaccine news and more …

(YHN)

7. No more tickets for panhandling

  • In Montgomery, the police department will no longer be arresting or ticketing people for panhandling, which comes after a lawsuit settlement that involved the City, the American Civil Liberties Union of Alabama and the Southern Poverty Law Center.
  • Per the settlement, there will no longer be arrests or tickets for panhandling for three years while courts decide if the laws that criminalize this behavior are constitutional.

6. Jury trials have been halted due to coronavirus

  • As coronavirus cases rise across the state, Mobile and Madison counties have decided to halt jury trials until next year, which also happened earlier in 2020 when the state started shutting down due to the pandemic.
  • The courts will still be operating, but they just won’t have some of the same in-person trials. Madison County will also halt some hearings for small claims, traffic and district courts.
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5. Votes are being certified

  • In both Pennsylvania and Nevada, the results of the General Election have been certified, with former Vice President Joe Biden winning both states, but there are still ongoing legal challenges in both states from President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign.
  • Biden’s senior advisor Bob Bauer said, “Trump did everything he could to disenfranchise voters and stop the results from being certified in Pennsylvania,” adding that some of the legal challenges led to “one of the most embarrassing courtroom performances of all time… Trump did not succeed in Pennsylvania and he will not succeed anywhere else.”

4. Reports of 2020 Census issues in Alabama

  • According to a new report from The Associated Press, Census workers in Alabama were instructed to falsify records if workers couldn’t get responses from households within the last month of the Census.
  • There are text messages between a supervisor and a worker where the worker is told to record fake counts in Dothan. Workers were allegedly told to record the household to have one person if no other response could be obtained. The Census Bureau is investigating the allegations. The false records could lead to an undercount of Alabama residents and impact congressional seats, Electoral College votes and federal funding.

3. Historic day for Dow Jones

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average surpassed 30,000 for the first time in history, and during a news briefing President Donald Trump announced this and said he’s “thrilled with what’s happened on the vaccine front.”
  • Trump went on to say that the advancements with a vaccine are “having a big effect.” He mentioned that this is the ninth time there’s been historic growth with the stock market during his presidency, while the national media is pretending this is about Biden’s cabinet picks — or as some of those in the media are referring to them, the “Avengers.”

2. Jones lobbying to work for Biden

  • U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) appeared on MSNBC with Joy Reid where he discussed the election and ongoing challenges from President Donald Trump’s campaign, and Jones said that this effort by Trump is a “national embarrassment.”
  • Jones said that what’s taken place are just “crazy conspiracy theories,” and added that he’s “not seeing anything where there was any legal basis whatsoever,” standing in agreement with former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s comments earlier this week. Jones also said it’s time to “let this transition move forward,” which was already happening as evidenced by the chyron that stated,  “GSA TELLS BIDEN IT IS READY TO BEGIN TRANSITION.”

1. Straight-ticket voting dominates

  • In Alabama, the number of people that went to their polling place or voted absentee who voted straight-ticket made up 67% of ballots counted in the 2020 election.
  • Unsurprisingly, Republicans dominated this count with 62% of all straight-ticket ballots cast going to the GOP, according to the Alabama Secretary of State’s office.

1 day ago

7 Things: Alabama certifies election as the transition begins, AG Marshall warns of slippery slope after he sues Madison County over Confederate monument, CARES Act helps Alabama company make PPE and more …

(YHN)

7. Del Marsh stepping down

  • Alabama State Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh (R-Anniston) will be stepping down from his leadership position, which was announced while the Senate Republican Caucus met.
  • It was decided that Senate Majority Leader Greg Reed (R-Jasper) will take over as pro tem and State Sen. Clay Scofield (R-Guntersville) will be the next majority leader; it’s likely that these changes will take effect when the 2021 regular session begins.

6. Thanksgiving restrictions being implemented everywhere

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  • New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) is pretending the state will check coronavirus tests of visitors as cops refuse to enforce his orders, Nevada is placing restrictions on casinos, Pennsylvania is banning alcohol sales, Maryland is upping the enforcement of their social -distancing and capacity restrictions, Colorado has stopped admitting some non-virus patients, and Washington state is ending elective and some cancer procedures. All of these measures are meant to stem the latest spike in coronavirus cases as Americans gather for the holiday.
  • A study out of Los Angeles’ hotspots indicates that COVID-19 cases in the county’s restaurants and bars accounted for just 3.1% of the 2,257 confirmed cases found from 204 “outbreak” locations. While this is raising questions about where the spread of this illness is actually taking place and pointing to grocery stores and manufacturing and bigger hotspots, this could be tied to the fact that everyone goes to grocery stores while bars and restaurants are seeing limited crowds.

5. Funds given to food banks

  • From the CARES Act funding that Alabama received, $3,606,104 will be given to Alabama food banks to repay expenses they’ve had during the coronavirus pandemic, as announced by Governor Kay Ivey’s office.
  • Ivey released a statement on the funds, saying, “Food banks in communities across Alabama have been a lifeline for those in need, and I am proud to be able to put these funds toward the Alabama feeding initiative. I have told Alabamians that I remain committed to getting these CARES Act funds into the hands of those who need it.”

4. CARES Act funding creating jobs

  • Governor Kay Ivey has announced that Homtex will receive $10,572,100 in CARES Act funding to manufacture face masks. Ivey praised Homtex for “stepping up during the COVID-19 pandemic to shift their production to create critical PPE supplies.”
  • The new plant, which will be located near Selma, will create 320 new jobs for the area. Ivey added that she appreciates the company’s “commitment to the economy and Alabama workers by providing needed jobs in Dallas County.”

3. Marshall: Removing monuments is a slippery slope

  • After filing a lawsuit against Madison County for the illegal removal of the Confederate monument outside of the Madison County Courthouse, Attorney General Steve Marshall released a video statement in which he suggested that these kinds of acts are a slippery slope.
  • Marshall said that decisions made like this are “done so out of fear.” He added, “It is now a question of when not if these same leaders will cast aside yet another law — being guided only by the political winds of the moment.” Marshall also pointed out laws should be challenged through the legislature.

2. Alabama election results certified

  • The State Canvassing Board in Alabama, which consists of Governor Kay Ivey, Attorney General Steve Marshall and Secretary of State John Merrill, has certified the state’s general election results from November 3.
  • Merrill said, “Alabamians shattered records for voter registration and voter engagement, proving that even a global pandemic cannot hinder our democratic participation.” Merrill went on to say that they have “certified those historic results and confirmed that Alabama is committed to providing free, fair, and accessible elections.”

1. GSA says the transition process can begin

  • U.S. General Services Administration chief Emily Murphy has been accused of withholding transition resources and attempting to stall the transfer of power, but now Murphy has informed former Vice President Joe Biden that the transition can begin.
  • In a letter to Biden, Murphy said that she “came to my decision independently, based on the law and available facts.” She also clarified that this wasn’t decided due to pressure from any elected officials, and she “did not receive any direction to delay my determination.”

2 days ago

Some believe it might be time for Secretary of State John Merrill to check out on social media — They are wrong

(John Merrill/Facebook, YHN)

Alabama’s secretary of state is in “trouble” again because of social media.

It isn’t because Merrill has done anything wrong, but because of the number of bad-faith actors on the platform and in the sad Alabama political press that takes their marching orders from their 30 Twitter followers.

The media fears them and their mean tweets.

John Merrill does not.

Merrill is coming off a very successful election season with zero issues. There was no voter suppression, no counting issues and essentially no controversy in Alabama.

Coming off their pummeling at the polls, Alabama Democrats are searching for a purpose in life. This includes their fellow travelers that poorly cover politics in Alabama.

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So, when Merrill retweeted a series of tweets that accurately point out that there will be blowback to mob violence, liberals pretended to get mad.

Merrill’s tweets via WHNT-TV below:

So, 20 activist groups got together and wrote a letter inviting Merrill to a press conference where the media will show up and pretend that they don’t understand why Merrill isn’t there.

The reason Merrill won’t be there is that these people are clowns.

The letter reportedly included this phrase:

Your retweet closely resembles General Longstreet’s: “white men, arm yourselves and prepare to deal with the looming encroachment of these violent Blacks, because we are all in the crosshairs.”

There is zero evidence of a white-on-black crime spree taking place. None.

In fact, when some form of racially motivated violence takes place, Americans of all colors denounce it.

The scenarios these groups are suggesting do not exist. They know this, and it is why they are losing relevance every single day.

This embarrassing gaslighting is done by people who don’t want to have a discussion. They want media coverage, and they got it. They always do.

The American media has continued to push evidence-free theories in the last four years:

  • Russia stole the 2016 election
  • President Donald Trump is a traitor
  • Republicans are guilty of treason
  • Cops hunt black people for sport
  • Rioting is protected speech
  • White people are more racist now than ever before
  • People are trying to keep minorities from voting
  • Anyone who doesn’t accept the 2020 election right now is undermining democracy
  • Those who support President Trump should be removed from society and never be allowed to work again

Each and every one of those assertions is more of a call to violence than anything John Merrill has said, and every single media outlet covering this story on the local and statewide level knows it.

And don’t think the Alabama media hasn’t stoked these fires. They just can’t do much. They have no stroke, they have no reach, they can’t penetrate the masses, and they have no impact.

They don’t matter. And to be clear, it is not because of a lack of effort. They just have no tangible impact on the world around them.

Merrill’s tweets are not inciting violence. They are describing it.

Listen to the breakdown of election coverage and how white women are demonized for splitting their votes and not being a monolith. Black men and Hispanics were targeted this way as well.

Listen as talking heads bemoan the white working class not voting the way they want them to.

If Merrill is inciting violence, so are they.

In reality, neither are doing anything of the sort. This is just a technique used to signal to media outlets how they should cover a story.

The people complaining don’t want conversation. They want to silence people they disagree with politically.

If Merrill stops tweeting his opinions, they win.

That’s the game, and that’s why Merrill should be like President Donald Trump and keep doing what he wants on social media while mocking those who can’t handle it.

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

2 days ago

7 Things: Another potential vaccine shows promise, Alabama’s state superintendent says to keep schools open, AG Marshall believes Confederate monument removal was illegal and more …

(YHN)

7. Trump legal team in disarray

  • Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has criticized President Donald Trump’s legal team for their claims throughout the election and the voter fraud claims, saying that they’re “a national embarrassment.”  
  • Christie also said that it’s time to stop challenging the results of the election. He added that if Trump has evidence of widespread voter fraud, he’s “had an opportunity to access the courts” and present the evidence.

6. Appeal filed in Pennsylvania after Trump lawsuit was thrown out

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  • In Pennsylvania, legal battles over election results continue as President Donald Trump’s legal team has filed an appeal after U.S. Middle District Judge Matthew Brann ruled against the request for an injunction that would prevent the state from certifying the election.
  • With his ruling, Brann said, “This Court has been unable to find any case in which a plaintiff has sought such a drastic remedy in the contest of an election, in terms of the sheer volume of votes asked to be invalidated.

5. Former State Rep. Alvin Holmes has passed

  • Over the weekend, former State Representative Alvin Holmes (D-Montgomery) passed away. He was a member of the legislature from 1974-2018. State Representative Chris England (R-Tuscaloosa) described Holmes as “a great Democrat and a fighter.”
  • House Speaker Mac McCutcheon (R-Monrovia) released a statement about Holmes, saying that he “was not only a champion of civil rights in Alabama but he was also a champion of all taxpayers.”

4. Merrill under fire for social media comments

  • Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill has come under criticism for some comments he made on social media after retweeting a post that referred to “Black Lives Matter’s war on whites” and another post that said, “[W]hen patriots decide it’s time to fight back it’s gonna be ugly.”
  • These posts led to a heated exchange between Merrill and a man named Michael Richard, who has admitted that he was “trolling” to get a negative reaction out of Merrill. Merrill ended the interaction when he told Richard, “You may also consider having a sex change operation so you can become what you were intended to be. You’re done here.” Merrill then blocked him. The secretary of state said that if he could do it over, he “would certainly have done it a different way…that’s not productive.”

3. Suit filed against Madison County for removal of Confederate monument

  • In Huntsville, a Confederate monument was relocated from the Madison County Courthouse to the Maple Hill Cemetery. Now, Attorney General Steve Marshall has filed a suit against the county for unlawfully removing the monument.
  • The Madison County Commission believed that they acted within the letter of the law since they applied for a permit to remove the monument and didn’t receive a response within the required 90 days. Since the monument is over 40 years old, Marshall has said that the removal couldn’t be legal.

2. Eric Mackey doesn’t suggest shutting down schools

  • State Superintendent of Education Dr. Eric Mackey appeared on Alabama Public Television’s “Capitol Journal,” where he discussed the idea of shutting down schools across the state as coronavirus cases spike.
  • Mackey said that while it’s Governor Kay Ivey’s decision about whether to keep schools open, he “would not recommend that.” He also believes “we should probably try to finish out the school year as best we can and hope that after a vaccine comes, things get a little better faster.”

1. Another coronavirus vaccine and a moved up timetable

  • With two potential vaccines approaching FDA emergency approval, the results for AstraZeneca’s new vaccine show an effectiveness rate of “around 90%,” which shows how fast the potential end of the pandemic could be upon us.
  • While appearing on CNN, Operation Warp Speed advisor Moncef Slaoui said the rollout time for a vaccine could be as little as 48 hours. Slaoui stated, “We are ready to start shipping vaccines within 24 hours from approval. ” He added, “[H]opefully people will start to be immunized, I would say within 48 hours from the approval.”

3 days ago

VIDEO: Ivey ends shutdown talk, 2020 election count goes on, Alabama schools prepare to deal with round of coronavirus spikes and more on Alabama Politics This Week

Radio talk show host Dale Jackson and Talk 99.5’s Matt Murphy take you through Alabama’s biggest political stories, including:

— Why did Governor Kay Ivey feel it was necessary to announce there would be no more shutdowns for Alabama?

— Have we almost reached the end of the 2020 election?

— Why are we seeing more coronavirus cases in Alabama, and how will that affect schools and Thanksgiving?

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Jackson and Murphy are joined by U.S. Representative Gary Palmer (R-Hoover) to discuss 2020, stimulus bills, what Congress looks like moving forward during another session helmed by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and more.

Jackson closes the show with a “parting shot” at those who think the moves by President Donald Trump and the GOP are about overturning an election when it is actually about “working the refs.”

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

5 days ago

7 Things: Ivey meets with Biden and Harris, CDC against Thanksgiving travel, the election still isn’t over and more …

(YHN)

7. Cam Ward plans to be ‘pragmatic’ in new role

  • After it was announced that State Senator Cam Ward (R-Alabaster) will be appointed to the director of the Alabama Bureau of Pardons and Paroles, he’s now said that he will take a “balanced approach” to issues within the agency.
  • Ward said that with the agency, “You’ve got to find a balanced approach that is pragmatic and, at the same time, based upon facts and data.” He added that he thinks they “need to get back to that.”

6. Huntsville could still get the Space Command

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  • Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (R) announced in a tweet that the Redstone Arsenal was in the running to be the home for United States Space Command. This is the second time that the North Alabama installation made the list of six op contenders for the headquarters.
  • But even as this conversation is taking place, some are pressuring presumed President-elect Joe Biden to end the Space Program — not because it is a bad idea, but because President Donald Trump established it.

5. Aderholt wants Pelosi to come back to the table 

  • After a bruising election and little movement on another round of stimulus spending to bolster the economy as we struggle through the coronavirus pandemic, U.S. Representative Robert Aderholt (R-Haleyville) says the current proposal by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) seems unlikely to pass.
  • Aderholt believes the Senate will not go along with her $2.2 trillion-plus plan. He advised, “The Senate is still in control through this Congress, for sure. And, it just won’t go anywhere. So, unless the speaker is willing to pare down on the House side, then I don’t see it going anywhere until maybe after the new year.”

4. Trump is trying to get Pennsylvania

  • President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign has filed a lawsuit in Pennsylvania claiming that he’s the rightful winner and should be named so. They’re saying they should win the state because their constitutional rights were violated when observers weren’t given proper access to watch vote counts.
  • They’re alleging that 1.5 million votes in the state “should not have been counted.” The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled earlier that observers did have proper access to ballot counting, but the campaign has criticized this decision.

3. Most people think Trump should concede now or soon

  • In a new poll conducted by Politico/Morning Consult, 46% of registered voters believe that President Donald Trump should concede “right away,” while 32% say he should concede if he can’t prove “widespread fraud.” Also, 9% of people surveyed had no opinion, and 12% said that Trump shouldn’t concede under any circumstances.
  • The poll also found that 45% of Republicans think Trump should concede if he can’t prove fraud, 17% think he should concede immediately, 25% said don’t concede at all. On the Democrat side, 72% believe Trump needs to concede now.

2. CDC: Don’t travel for Thanksgiving

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced recommendations for the Thanksgiving holiday, saying that it would be best for people not to travel. If people do have to travel, they’re recommending taking precautions such as social distancing and wearing a mask.
  • The CDC said, “Postponing travel and staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others this year.” This echoes other recommendations from public health officials who have said not to travel as coronavirus cases are spiking across the country.

1. Governor Kay Ivey met with Biden and Harris

  • In a virtual meeting, Governor Kay Ivey met with former Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA), as well as other members of the National Governors Association’s executive committee.
  • The focus of the meeting was to improve coordination between state and federal governments with the coronavirus. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, as well as the governors of Utah, Michigan, New Mexico, Massachusetts, Colorado and Arkansas also attended the meeting.

6 days ago

7 Things: Ivey says no more shutdowns, Alabama lawmaker who had coronavirus warns others, more recounts and more …

(YHN)

7. Congress has the coronavirus 

  • U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) announced that he’s tested positive for the coronavirus and will be following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines on quarantining. He’s said that he’s “feeling good.”
  • Grassley isn’t the only one. Thirty-plus members of Congress are presumed to have the coronavirus. Alabama’s U.S. Representative for the Fourth Congressional District Robert Aderholt (R-Haleyville) is self-quarantining.

6. Cruises out of Mobile canceled until March

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  • Carnival Cruise Line has announced that their cruises that normally leave from the Port of Mobile will be canceled until at least March 1, 2021. This was part of widespread cancellations from the cruise line.
  • These decisions were made due to the coronavirus pandemic, and the company had already shut down operations on November 4. The earliest the company might resume sending cruise liners out is February 1 from either Miami or Port Canaveral.

5. New grant program for small businesses

  • Revive Plus, a new grant program for small businesses across Alabama which is funded through $200 million of the CARES Act funding that the state received, was announced by Governor Kay Ivey.
  • Grants will be for up to $20,000 for expenses that are related to the pandemic. When announcing the program, Ivey said, “A second round of assistance through Revive Plus will ensure that the small business owners who have borne the brunt of the downed economy can be made as whole as possible.”

4. State Senator McClendon stresses severity of coronavirus 

  • After being hospitalized for about 10 days with the coronavirus, State Senator Jim McClendon (R-Springville) has a message of caution as cases across the state continue to rise. McClendon said the chances of coming into contact with someone who is asymptomatic “is the highest it’s ever been in Alabama.”
  • The state lawmaker pointed out that the care he received in the hospital was because there was “a protocol to follow” with treatment, which didn’t exist as much earlier in the year. He also has said that he tried “to be careful but boy it nailed me anyway.”

3. 2020 election results chaos continues

  • President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign has said they plan to file a petition to have a recount in Milwaukee and Dane County, Wisconsin, where the campaign has alleged ballots were illegally altered and government officials gave improper or illegal advice on voter IDs. Former Vice President Joe Biden won Wisconsin by 20,608 votes with a goal of closing the gap, showing fraud and opening the door to more challenges.
  • Meanwhile, more uncounted votes were found in Georgia and the election board in Wayne County, Michigan, that would not certify their votes and then did, has decided they would rather not.

2. Schools in Alabama and beyond closing

  • Just before New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that public city schools would be shutting down, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was busy fighting with a reporter and saying there was no way schools would shut down, but he was wrong.
  • Alabama schools across the state are closing as well. Some are closed for a week because of Thanksgiving; some will be closed for a longer period, which is not good. Grades are down and 5,000 students have apparently disappeared.

1. Ivey won’t shut Alabama down again

  • Governor Kay Ivey has officially said that she doesn’t have plans to send Alabama into another lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic. Ivey just plainly said she “will not shut down businesses.”
  • To the relief of many, Ivey added, “[T]he business community certainly has my support. As I’ve said many times, you cannot have a life without a livelihood.” This comes one day after the Business Council of Alabama (BCA) started their “Keep Alabama Open” push.

1 week ago

Stop the steal? The GOP is just ‘working the refs’

(Dale Jackson/Facebook, Pixabay, YHN)

Joe Biden is probably going to be inaugurated in January. I think most people accept this.

A small group of people believes the 2020 election was stolen. I am not one of them.

What I do believe is that multiple entities in multiple states worked to lessen ballot rules to allow for more shenanigans to take place, which should stop.

In some instances, a secretary of state just changed the rules, and in other instances, it was the courts.

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In Georgia, the Republican secretary of state entered into a consent decree with the support of Stacey Abrams, a person that has not conceded her own 2018 election loss, and that had an impact by weakening signature matching procedures.

Do I believe the election will/should be overturned? No.

Do I believe we should look at every irregularity and make sure these things don’t happen again? Yes.

But those counting need to be aware that people are watching and this election needs to be an anomaly and not the norm.

In football, you often see a coach going ballistic on the sideline over a borderline call, sometimes a clear call, that goes against his team. He knows the call is good, you as a fan know it, the announcers know it and the players know it. He is in the process of “working the refs.”

By working the refs, it sends a signal that there is scrutiny on what is happening, and the hope is that the referee is either more judicious or a call goes in the coach’s favor next time.

I believe that is what is happening here, and Republicans are smart to do this.

The GOP knows many rulings pre-election went against them and that battles would be fought against those rulings post-election, win or lose.

This has to play out to assert the rule of law. Put power back in state legislatures’ hands, and let the world know people are watching these shenanigans.

Democrats have been doing this for years — to great success.

There is no evidence of race-based voter suppression that politicians or media outlets can point to, but if you listen to the talk before an election you would think that Bull Connor and his dogs are outside polling places in every American city.

They are working the refs and riling up their base.

Much like the media and their Democrats demanded during the Russia investigation, we should allow these investigations and challenges to play out to make sure all is on the up and up.

After all, what do they have to hide?

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

1 week ago

7 Things: Executive overreach feared in Alabama and beyond, more troops to leave Afghanistan and Iraq, Doug Jones keeps casting irrelevant votes and more …

(YHN)

7. Huntsville CEO indicted

  • Paul Daigle, a Huntsville CEO, has been charged with conspiracy, wire fraud and false claims. This was in his attempts to defraud the Defense Department in relation to the war in Afghanistan.
  • According to investigators, Daigle used underqualified workers, causing the government to overpay for labor, and he told employees to falsify education records. Some of the charges are in relation to false billing where the government was charged for work that wasn’t related to the agreed-upon contract.

6. State Sen. Cam Ward new Pardons and Paroles director

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  • Governor Kay Ivey has officially announced that State Senator Cam Ward (R-Alabaster) will become the new director of the Alabama Board of Pardons and Paroles on December 7.
  • Ivey noted Ward’s “career as an attorney and public servant,” adding that she’s “confident that his background and experience will position him to closely follow the letter of the law while providing individuals every opportunity possible to rebuild their lives post-incarceration.”

5. Americans want a relief package

  • In a new Hill-HarrisX poll conducted from November 10-13, 77% of people want to see a coronavirus relief package passes as soon as possible. Support for another package has seemed to grow as negotiations seem to continue to stall or not happen at all. The survey included 2,762 registered voters.
  • In the survey, 23% of people oppose another relief package. Broken up by party, 78% of independents, 89% of Democrats and 64% of Republicans support another relief package. Even 67% of those who say they voted for President Donald Trump support relief.

4. More irregularities and voter issues as the 2020 election goes on

  • For the second day in a row, over two thousand votes were found during a hand recount in Fayette County that were not included in the final tally of votes, but Georgia’s secretary of state said there were several backup steps that failed to catch the issue, which he said falls on workers who didn’t follow the procedures. This latest mistake added 1,577 votes for President Donald Trump and 1,128 for Joe Biden.
  • In Michigan, two Republican members of the Wayne County Board of Canvassers voted against the certification of the general election results. This area has 43 different jurisdictions, including Detroit. The Republican chair of the committee cited incomplete information and unexplained discrepancies between ballots cast and the number of absentee ballots that were counted as reasoning for her vote. Hours later, the two Republicans collapsed under pressure and changed their votes but asked Michigan’s secretary of state to look into the issues they noted hours earlier.

3. Jones continues to vote against Trump

  • U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) is now on his way out and a “lame duck” senator until January 3, and he’s continued his reputation of irrelevantly voting against President Donald Trump on judiciary picks.
  • Most recently, Jones voted against the cloture on the nominations of Kristi Haskins Johnson for the U.S. Southern District of Mississippi, Benjamin Joel Beaton for the U.S. Western District of Kentucky and Toby Crouse for U.S. District of Kansas.

2. Trump pulling more troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan

  • America’s seemingly never-ending wars will see fewer troops engaged in them by the time the Trump administration wraps up after President Trump ordered the Pentagon to reduce the number of troops in Iraq and Afghanistan by 2,500, according to acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller.
  • Resistance to this came from all sides, including inside the Pentagon where leadership has argued that further troop withdrawals will hurt peace talks in Afghanistan and jeopardize the missions that have been going on for long over a decade.

1. Emergency powers under scrutiny at many levels

  • As more states move towards lockdowns, the Business Council of Alabama has launched, “Keep Alabama Open,” a program that opposes the potential for a nationwide lockdown and argues Alabama’s leaders can best handle Alabama business. The program commends Governor Kay Ivey for “continuing to exercise thoughtful leadership in this unprecedented time.”
  • Baldwin County Republican Party chairman Michael Hoyt recently spoke about the issue of lockdowns and how much emergency power is given to the executive branch of government during these times. Hoyt said, “We don’t elect dictators on the state level, and we don’t on the national level. They do have to be held accountable, and they will by the people.” He also detailed that he’s unhappy with the language in some of the emergency powers granted to the governor in Alabama, saying that “the governor can declare this emergency, and it can be for public health reasons and last for 60 days unless she extends it by proclamation with no end in sight…I think we’ve really got to look from top to bottom at our emergency management statutes and really claw back the authority of the governor’s office and the state health executive. It’s really concerning.”

1 week ago

7 Things: Alabama will get coronavirus vaccine in December, Jones has advice for Democrats after big loss, stimulus checks could be tax-free in Alabama and more …

(YHN)

7. Votes found in Georgia

  • Reportedly, 2,600 ballots have been found in Georgia’s Floyd County during a recount that is now underway. Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger says this happened because election officials failed to upload votes that were on a memory card inside a ballot-scanning machine.
  • As usual, the errors never seem to affect Democrats. The “found” ballots will now add about 800 votes to President Donald Trump’s total, leaving him about 14,000 votes behind former Vice President Joe Biden.

6. Democrats misread the results of the 2020 election

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  • In a Biden administration, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) is hopeful about how progressive the first 100 days will look. In a recent interview, he said that the focus will be climate change, raising the minimum wage, changing the tax code and even “strengthening labor unions.”
  • Schumer added that they also want to focus on “getting rid of student debt.” He continued, “I have a proposal with Elizabeth Warren that the first $50,000 of debt be vanquished, and we believe that Joe Biden can do that with a pen as opposed to legislation.”

5. Huntsville firm will help return people to the moon

  • Teledyne Brown Engineering, Inc. (TBE) in Huntsville has been awarded an $85 million contract and will supply two Launch Vehicle Stage Adapters (LVSA) to NASA for the Artemis II and III missions.
  • TBE President Jan Hess said that they’re “thrilled to be a part of the monumental Artemis spaceflight moon missions.” Hess added that this further solidifies “our prominence in designing and building spaceflight hardware.”

4. Biden still can’t condemn his supporters’ violence

  • Over the weekend, there were protests in support of President Donald Trump in Washington, D.C., but violence did break out as some of the protesters were attacked by counter-protesters. When asked about the violence, former Vice President Joe Biden made a very general statement.
  • Biden denounced “all acts of violence” through a statement made by his spokesperson Andrew Bates. The statement continued to also denounce “the repugnant displays of white supremacy that were made in Washington, D.C. this weekend,” which is how the media allows its allies to use as a blanket excuse for the violence of fellow liberals.

3. Stimulus payments could be tax-exempt

  • State Representatives Arnold Mooney (R-Indian Springs) and Andy Whitt (R-Harvest) have pre-filed legislation that would guarantee the stimulus checks people across Alabama received from the federal government are tax exempt.
  • Whitt described collecting taxes on the stimulus payments as “almost immoral when you consider the reason they were awarded in the first place.” Mooney explained, “We just need to take care of our citizens; that is what we’re down there for.”

2. Yes, Democrats should listen to Doug Jones

  • U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) lost his reelection bid in Alabama, but while on MSNBC, he spoke about some of the races in Georgia and how those could show promise for Democrats in the South.
  • Jones said that “there are amazing opportunities in the South despite the losses.” He went on to add that “what you’re seeing in Georgia and other places right now where the base of voters are beginning to look at things in a different way.”

1. First vaccine doses could be available by December

  • In Alabama, it’s likely that the first doses of the coronavirus vaccine could be available to some by mid-December, and the Alabama Department of Public Health has also confirmed that the vaccine will be free. There will be no charge for the vaccine, no matter if someone has health insurance or not.
  • Many vaccines are still being studied, but a few have been proven very effective and are currently going through steps to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

1 week ago

Win ‘The Dale Jackson Facemask Challenge,’ make me look dumb and get $2,000

(Dale Jackson/Contributed, Pixabay, YHN)

Masks are terrible, and I hate them. I will wear the mask until the coronavirus pandemic is in our rear-view mirror because I want this stupid thing over with.

Do I think they shut down the virus? No.

People wear masks and still get sick.

I have eyes. I see that we have more daily cases today than the day we put the mask order in place, but because I talk for a living, I see what is expelled in public places. And if this slows the spread a bit, I am fine with that.

If you want to argue about masks, you are in the wrong place. This isn’t Facebook.

Most Americans have decided that the masks are important and will wear them, a new poll shows 93% of Americans wear a mask daily.

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Excerpt from US News:

More than nine in 10 U.S. adults (93%) said they sometimes, often or always wear a mask or face covering when they leave their home and are unable to socially distance, including more than seven in 10 (72%) who said they always do so, the poll revealed.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation estimates that 60% of Alabamians are wearing masks.

Seems low to me, but sure let’s go with that. A majority of Americans and Alabamians are masking up to go out into the world.

This is a silent deal we have all made. Maybe we will get Thanksgiving, maybe Christmas, maybe Easter. Maybe one day we get back to normal if I wear this mask.

Maybe it is pointless, who knows. But what I do know is that people are wearing masks.

But even with this happening, we are bombarded with some of the most tone-deaf messaging imaginable, and that is usually followed with some good old fashioned ignorance.

Who would be swayed by this? No one.

In fairness, from some of those, I just looked up some of the most insufferable people in Alabama media and searched “mask.”

But when you question this, you end up with stuff like this:

This stuff is prevalent across the board. It seems the only thing that makes us feel better than wearing a mask is trying to shame others for not wearing a mask.

“I am wearing a mask but those people I don’t like are not!”

But all of this is noise. Most Alabamians are doing what they must and to prove this point, I will place a bit of a wager.

Let’s call it “The Dale Jackson Facemask Challenge.”

I will bet my $2,000 against anyone’s $1,000 that over 60%+1 of the people inside either Cullman Walmart are wearing masks.

Contact me at dale@yellowhammernews.com, and I will gladly schedule a time for us to meet in Cullman, Alabama, and conduct our survey.

With cash in hand, we go to Cullman, livestream the counting, and I will take your money.

There is no good cause or charity that will get the money if I win. This is not for Christmas for my son or a gift for my long-suffering wife.

This is solely a monetary transaction from your hand to my pocket to pay for the constant lies told about the people of this state.

I will take your $1,000 and use it to buy a new Xbox and alcohol.

Media outlets, politicians, healthcare “experts” and social media heroes are welcome to step up and prove their points that Alabamians are not taking this seriously. Will they?

Do I expect anyone to take me up on this? No, of course not. The hateful people who feel they must baselessly bash their neighbors are cowards at heart.

But never let it be said that I did not give them the incentive to prove their point — a point they know they won’t even attempt to back up.

They know they can’t. They know they are lying about their fellow Alabamians, as they normally do, and they will never own it.

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

1 week ago

7 Things: Still no concession from Trump, concern over shutdown lingers in Alabama, Tuberville stresses importance of Georgia U.S. Senate race and more …

(YHN)

7. Mardi Gras won’t be canceled

  • Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson assured that Mardi Gras 2021 won’t be canceled, but said some things may look a bit different. 
  • Parade permits will still be issued, and the city will be removing some financial penalties if there are cancellations up to a week prior to festivities. 

6. Shots fired at mayor’s home

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  • In Selma, shots were fired into Mayor James Perkins’ house, but no one inside was injured; an investigation is currently underway. 
  • Police Chief Kenta Fulford said they “will do everything that we can to see that the person or persons that are responsible for the shootings that have been going on, not just at his (Perkins’) home but throughout the city, are prosecuted.”

5. Congressman Aderholt is self-quarantining

  • U.S. Representative Robert Aderholt (R-Haleyville) will remain in Alabama after coming in contact with someone that has since tested positive for COVID-19 and will now miss a week of votes in the House of Representatives.
  • The House physician advised Aderholt to quarantine even though the congressman tested negative. According to a statement, Aderholt “has no symptoms.”

4. Violence against conservatives goes ignored

  • Ivanka Trump has recently voiced her frustration with the media’s lack of reaction to civil unrest that took place over the weekend, saying on Twitter that the “silence about the physical violence against conservative is shameful & dangerous.” The media’s desire to blame conservative victims is well known.
  • Ivanka added, “Violence is never the answer and instigators must be condemned and prosecuted.” This comes after protestors and counter-protestors clashed in Washington, D.C. 

3. Tuberville thinks the U.S. Senate race in Georgia is important

  • Former Auburn football coach and now U.S. Senate-elect Tommy Tuberville has issued a bit of a warning about what the state of the country could become if Republicans lose the majority in the U.S. Senate. According to recent polls, there may not be much of a worry.
  • Tuberville first said that if Democrats hold the majority, “we have lost our country as we know it.” He went on to add, “We will not have a Christian conservative majority ever again… If we lose the Senate, it’s going to be a different world.”

2. No, a second shutdown probably won’t happen here

  • As coronavirus cases across the country and Alabama increase, there have already been talks of another economic shutdown to slow or stop the spread. Michigan has already moved towards a shutdown, but it seems unlikely that another shutdown will happen in Alabama. 
  • State Senator Chris Elliott (R-Daphne) has said that a shutdown in that way couldn’t be done federally and has to be handled locally. Elliott went on to say, “[T]hese type of orders are very difficult, if not impossible, to enforce. And even with what has occurred over the last six-plus months, you are seeing folks saying, ‘Look, enough is enough. I’m not doing it.’ And that is going to make shutting things down unenforceable.”

1. No conceding yet

  • As legal losses mount, President Donald Trump has remained consistent and strong on the matter of the general election, maintaining that former Vice President Joe Biden being the projected winner is on the basis of fraud. 
  • Recently, Trump tweeted, “He only won in the eyes of the FAKE NEWS MEDIA. I concede NOTHING! We have a long way to go. This was a RIGGED ELECTION!” Trump’s tweets have continued to be flagged by Twitter. 

1 week ago

VIDEO: Presidential election goes on, COVID-19 surges, voting laws will change in Alabama and more on Alabama Politics This Week

Radio talk show host Dale Jackson and Alabama Democratic Executive Committee member Lisa Handback take you through Alabama’s biggest political stories, including:

— Will the 2020 presidential election ever end, and will anything change?

— Can Alabama avoid additional restrictions and shutdowns as COVID-19 surges across the globe again?

— Will Alabama voting laws change in Alabama, and what do the two sides that want to change them look like?

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Jackson and Handback are joined by Alabama Democratic Party Chairman and State Representative Chris England (D-Tuscaloosa) to discuss 2020, election law, the future of the Alabama Democratic Party and more.

Jackson closes the show with a “parting shot” at those who wanted to see the investigation concerning Russia and President Donald Trump to play itself out but want all questions about this election dropped immediately.

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

2 weeks ago

Merrill ready to assist Georgia with election process — ‘We bring a particular set of skills that we think can be helpful’

(John Merrill/Facebook)

As the presidential election of 2020 crawls to a finish, another election in a neighboring state is heating up.

The controversies surrounding the results will not be resolved; the harm done to our faith in the elections will still exist and the inflamed tension will not end any time soon.

Alabama, much to the chagrin of the national media and their Democrats, appears to have this situation handled.

We made voting easier for many, got the votes counted, and avoided any issue of suppression and chaos.

Now, Secretary of State John Merrill is ready to help Georgia avoid some of the issues they are currently seeing.

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“We bring a particular set of skills that we think can be helpful to them and what they’re trying to do,” Merrill said Thursday on “The Dale Jackson Show.”

When it comes to accepting the results of the election, Merrill believes that finding massive occurrences of voter fraud that will overturn the call of an election in any given state is unlikely based on his experiences.

He advised, “You would have to find instances where thousands of votes needed to be set aside because of the way they were cast or introduced and the likelihood of that happening is just not very strong.”

But Merrill thinks some states have too many different systems internally and believe states should work to do this after this election to bring themselves in line with what Alabama has done.

Uniformity across counties in the states is key, according to Merrill.

He advised, “In all 67 counties of Alabama we do our elections the same way. They do that in Florida.”

The secretary of state noted that is something that isn’t done in Pennsylvania and Georgia, which he said is “a problem.”

My takeaway:

Merrill is ready to help in Georgia if needed, and that election is very important to the direction of this country — no matter where you stand. We should all want the results of any election to be tabulated fairly and all challenges exhausted. Until people believe that has happened, the trust in the electoral system will be degraded further than the last two elections have already done.

Listen:

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

2 weeks ago

7 Things: Biden takes Arizona while Trump campaign wins legal battle in Pennsylvania, COVID-19 shutdown fight brewing in Alabama, Alabama school system moves to virtual and more …

(YHN)

7. Confederate flag removed

  • At the Marshall County Courthouse in Albertville, a Confederate flag, which was originally put there by the Sons of Confederate Veterans,
  • has been removed. The flag was replaced with a replica of the design for the Alabama Session Convention pre-Civil War.
  • There have been protests over the Confederate flag and monument outside of the courthouse for months, and this is just another area in Alabama that has relocated Confederate symbols in recent weeks.

6. Groups are advocating for CARES Act funding to be spent

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  • In Alabama, there’s still $1 billion of CARES Act funding that needs to be spent before December 30, otherwise, it will have to be returned to the federal government. Now, Governor Kay Ivey is being approached by groups on how the money should be spent.
  • Over 80 organizations have started advocating for how the money should be distributed. In a letter to Ivey, Alabama Arise, Alabama Appleseed and other organizations said, “These CARES Act funds provide our best hope to ensure the economic downturn does not force these families into long term, catastrophic conditions that will impact generations to come.”

5. Fauci says pandemic might be over soon

  • The dire talk of a never-ending pandemic seems to have ended as soon as the election did, with Pfizer announcing that they are close to getting approval for their vaccines and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Anthony Fauci declaring the pandemic won’t be with us much longer.
  • While speaking to a London-based think tank, Fauci said, “Certainly it’s not going to be a pandemic for a lot longer because I believe the vaccines are going to turn that around.” This is a striking reversal of tone for Fauci and others who weeks ago said the pandemic would be with us for a very long time.

4. Republicans support Biden receiving briefings

  • Former Vice President Joe Biden is likely to be declared the next President of the United States, and while the final election results haven’t been made official, many Republicans have started advocating for Biden to receive classified briefings to begin the transition of power.
  • U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), James Lankford (R-OK), Chuck Grassley (R-IO) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) have all come out in favor of Biden having access to classified briefings. Graham was asked directly about this, and even said that he hopes Biden can have access to these briefings soon.

3. Virtual schooling grows

  • Until January 5, 2021, Marshall County schools will be virtual due to the increase of coronavirus cases and even the Superintendent Cindy Wigley testing positive for the virus. The transition to virtual learning will begin Friday.
  • In what could be a coming trend, other schools across the state are moving to online school, as well. Alexander City schools go online Monday and will continue that way until after the Thanksgiving holidays. In Birmingham, Tuggle Elementary School will go online after five COVID-19 cases over the past two weeks.

2. Ainsworth will fight another shutdown

  • While Governor Kay Ivey has been silent, other governors are moving towards more COVID-19 restrictions to fight a growing coronavirus outbreak, but Lt. Governor Will Ainsworth has said that he will fight back against any presented lockdowns.
  • Ainsworth said on Twitter that he “will fight this as hard as I can. I am 100% against a lockdown.” Ainsworth has been against shutdowns and the mask mandate.

1. Biden wins Arizona, while the rule of law wins in Pennsylvania

  • A victory for former Vice President Joe Biden became more likely last night when multiple media outlets called Arizona for the Biden campaign and the Republican attorney general in Arizona said there was no evidence of voter fraud that would change the state of the race.
  • In a rebuke of Pennsylvania’s secretary of state, an appellate court ruled that the state should not count ballots where identification errors were not corrected by November 9, and the decision to do that was in conflict with the state’s constitution. The ruling gives hope to the Trump campaign that the courts will invalidate the extension to accept ballots three days after Election Day that started this chain of events.

2 weeks ago

7 Things: COVID-19 vaccine may not come soon enough to stop coming wave, Tuberville lashes out at socialism and communism, AL AG involved in election challenges and more …

(YHN)

7. Demands are already being made

  • As media outlets have declared former Vice President Joe Biden the projected winner of the 2020 presidential election, Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors is now working to get a meeting with Biden.
  • Cullors said they “want to be heard and our agenda to be prioritized.” She added that Black Lives Matter “would like to be actively engaged in your Transition Team’s planning and policy work. Let’s get to work!”

6. No one is going anywhere

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  • Mississippi State Rep. Price Wallace (R) has suggested that the state should “succeed from the union” over former Vice President Joe Biden being declared the president-elect.
  • Wallace’s comment was in response to a Twitter thread posted by fellow State Rep. Robert Foster (R), where Foster was advocating for only legal votes to be counted.

5. Georgia will recount all ballots

  • Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has announced that the state will be doing a full recount of the 2020 presidential election by hand. During his announcement, he said this “will be a heavy lift, but we will work with the counties to get this done in time for our state certification.”
  • In Georgia, former Vice President Joe Biden is currently leading with just over 14,000 votes, but the state hasn’t been called for either candidate. It has been such a close race in Georgia, and they’re working to verify the results.

4. Alabama’s AG involved in election challenges

  • Attorney General Steve Marshall announced this week that he was joining with other attorneys general from around the country to challenge the decision in Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court that changed the way the state does elections by extending the deadline for mail-in ballots, which the state legislature was opposed to.
  • Marshall noted that this is not just about what is happening in Pennsylvania, but what will happen in the future all over the country “is more broad than just simply this election.” He added, “This relates fundamentally to how we conduct elections in this country. For us moving forward, it is very important for the court to weigh in whether Pennsylvania ends up being a state that ultimately matters and whether or not President Trump or Joe Biden becomes the president, it is something the matters for many elections to come.”

3. Tuberville is showing what kind of senator he will be

  • Former Auburn football coach and U.S. Senator-elect Tommy Tuberville appeared on Fox News where he said that Republicans are “fighting for the future of the country” against the “socialists and communists” of the Democrat Party.
  • As he advocated against moving toward socialism or communism, Tuberville added, “[W]e better start going by the rules and the Constitution and understand what this country was about and how we got here and the fundamentals.”

2. Rising hospitalizations and cases hit Alabama, U.S.

  • The record number of coronavirus cases hospitalizations, including Huntsville, Mobile and Birmingham, and widespread outbreaks are leading to governors revisiting restrictions. This includes Democrats and Republicans both looking for a way to stop the spread, including appeals for people to stay home when some courts have struck some restrictions down.
  • Statements by former Vice President Joe Biden’s choices for his team that will attempt to tackle the ongoing coronavirus pandemic continue to show that the strategy for the virus will probably be lockdowns, mask orders and helping the rest of the world get the vaccine before the United States does.

1. Experts: COVID-19 vaccine won’t stop this wave

  • While it does seem that an effective coronavirus vaccine is going to be delivered to states by the end of the year, some health officials are trying to remind people that doesn’t mean the vaccine will stop the current wave of cases we’re seeing in Alabama or the record numbers of cases nationwide.
  • Director of the division of infectious diseases at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine Dr. Jeanne Marrazzo is trying to remind everyone to continue taking precautions. She added, “Ten to fifteen million is not enough to immunize people who are high risk for complications. …It’s a ray of hope, but right now we have to slog through what these numbers are showing.”

2 weeks ago

The military gave me way more than I ever gave the military

(Dale Jackson/Contributed)

Every year on Veterans Day, I hear people talk about how thankful they are for the people in the military and those who have served.

Yadda yadda yadda. I get it.

But let me tell you, those who have served are lucky for that experience.

This may surprise you, but I was on a fast track to nowhere growing up.

I was an OK kid. I wasn’t super smart and wasn’t super-motivated. My GPA in high school was 1.7, but that was mostly because I skipped about 45 days of school in my last semester.

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The decision to meet with a recruiter was nothing special. It was just a normal ‘what am I going to do with my life?’ session, and I decided to take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery. A few weeks later, I was signing up to join the military with no real job goal, career direction or care in the world.

My father was a Purple Heart recipient Combat Medic in Vietnam; he was not pleased with my decision-making to this point. Almost every male member of my family on both my mother and father’s side had served in some capacity.

I guess I was next.

I lucked into a job as a 31F, a network system switching operator and maintainer, and I had no clue what that was. I knew it offered a steady paycheck and apparently an Army College Fund worth $40,000 at the time which grew as incentives increased.

I had no direction, no desire to go to college, and off I went.

On day one of basic combat training, my life changed. Drill Sergeant Goldhammer informed the soldiers on the bus with their heads down that “welcome to Fort Jackson, South Carolina,” were the last nice words I would ever hear him say.

He was right.

We got off the bus, and all the yelling and theatrics immediately took place. There was a pile of identical duffle bags each with our names and info on them, and we were yelled at to find ours and get in line.

This is where it all clicked, like a movie where the clouds clear and the sun starts to shine. I realized every opportunity is what you make it. I could be upset by all the yelling, or I could do what I was told and do it to the best of my ability. There was no reason to resist in this situation.

I learned a lot in the coming weeks, and when I left, my weak demeanor was gone. I went from running two miles in 24+ minutes to two miles in 13+ minutes. I felt I had a purpose. I had goals and a better life was possible.

I went on to graduate from Advanced Individual Training at Fort Gordon, Georgia. I then served in my one duty station of Fort Lewis, Washington. I subsequently attained the rank of sergeant in a little over three years, and I began looking forward to going to college after I left the service. I thought about re-enlisting, but I had so many opportunities because of my time spent in the Army that I was ready to go out into the world.

I was armed with money for college, drive and ambition. The Army remade me.

I was confident, and college came easy to me. By the time I graduated from the University of Florida telecommunication program, I had a GPA well over 3. At Florida, I interned and earned my first radio job.

I had joined the reserves as part of a public affairs unit. Believe it or not, I failed the voice test to get into the Army’s Public Affairs Broadcast Field.

Years later, I was still benefiting from that four-year stint in the Army, and still am today.

Just counting the GI Bill, Army College Fund and VA Loan programs, I have benefited to the tune of at least $100,000 dollars in direct benefit since I last picked up an M16A2.

Every mortgage I pay will be smaller because on August 28, 1997, I raised my hand and took an oath.

That changed my life. And it will forevermore.

The point I am making is this: I am thankful to all of those who have served and suffered a loss in that process. I know I am beyond lucky for the life I have lived and the gifts given to me.

Joining the military was the greatest decision I ever made; without that decision, who knows what my life would look like.

I highly recommend anyone looking for a purpose or direction to join the military and find that purpose in serving their country.

I know that I got more out of the military than it got out of me, and I am thankful for that every single day.

Thank you to all the veterans out there who served with honor, and thank you to the United States of America for allowing me the opportunity to serve you and better myself.

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

2 weeks ago

7 Things: Republicans remember 2016, Doug Jones blames everyone else for his loss, Alabama/Auburn games postponed over COVID-19 and more …

(YHN)

7. USPS whistleblower says he never recanted as media declares he did

  • A saga has been brewing in Pennsylvania as a postal worker alleged, then reportedly recanted, then declared he never recanted an accusation that the postmaster in Erie, PA, had workers backdate ballots so they would have appeared to be mailed and received before Election Day.
  • The original accusation from postman Richard Hopkins is that he and others were told all ballots that were received after the election were to be postmarked for November 3. Hopkins has responded to reports of his recantation by producing a video he alleges is USPS investigators pressuring him. He says, “I did not recant my statements. That did not happen.” Hopkins emphasizes in a reaction video, “I would like the Washington Post to recant their wonderful little article they just decided to throw out there out of random.”

6. The media loves polling 

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  • After a failure of polling that even the media admits now, Reuters/Ipsos has released a poll showing that 79% of Americans believe former Vice President Joe Biden won the White House, while 13% said the election hasn’t been decided, 5% don’t know and 3% think Trump won.
  • This is not much of a surprise. The American media has been demanding people accept the results without question, and CNN has gone so far as to start publishing lists of politicians who have not called Biden to congratulate him.

5. Legalizing medical marijuana

  • Alabama State Representative Mike Ball (R-Madison) is renewing his push to legalize medical marijuana in Alabama after Mississippi just voted to legalize it on November 3. Previously, Ball had presented a medical marijuana bill that passed the Alabama Senate but was stalled in the House.
  • Ball has now said that he truly believes he has the votes in the House for the bill to pass, and he’s said that it’s “time for us to pick it up…We need to go ahead and pass it.” He even insisted that legalizing medical marijuana “does not have to be a step toward recreational,” which is a regular concern with legalizing medical marijuana.

4. Auburn football being put on pause

  • Auburn University head football coach Gus Malzahn has announced that a total of 12 people in the football program, including nine players, have tested positive for the coronavirus. Auburn was set to play Mississippi State this weekend, but the game was rescheduled for December 12 due to positive cases at Mississippi State.
  • The team has also done contact tracing, which has led to more people having to quarantine. These are the first positive cases that Auburn has had to deal with since the week of September 12.

3. Alabama/LSU game canceled

  • After a number of positive coronavirus cases were announced on the LSU football team, the game that was scheduled between LSU and the University of Alabama for this weekend has been postponed.
  • LSU had to meet a minimum of 53 healthy players to be able to play, and they were unable to do so due to too many players needing to quarantine.

2. Doug Jones still doesn’t get it

  • U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) has spoken out about why he believes Democrats struggled through this election cycle, as Jones himself lost his reelection for former Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville. He believes that his loss has nothing to do with the fact that he held positions completely out of step with most Alabamians and refused to explain why.
  • Jones said the issue is really with how the party has inadequately defended against attacks from Republicans, saying that Democrats are “not some demonic cult-like we’re portrayed to be … Democrats have not been able to fully counter the Republican narrative.”

1. Democrats seem to think the 2016 election results were accepted right away

  • Many have continued to question why President Donald Trump hasn’t conceded the presidential race to former Vice President Joe Biden yet, and there are also those in the media asking Republicans to admit that Biden has won the presidency, even though there are outstanding legal issues and recounts at play.
  • U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has said that there’s “no reason for alarm” over why all Republican leaders haven’t admitted that Biden has won and congratulated him yet. McConnell added that there should be “no lectures about how the president should immediately, cheerfully accept preliminary election results from the same characters who just spent four years refusing to accept the validity of the last election and who insinuated that this would be illegitimate too if they lost again – only if they lost.”

2 weeks ago

Two Alabama legislators view 2020 election chaos as an opportunity to change voting laws

(YHN, Pixabay)

The 2020 election was never in question in Alabama. Donald Trump blew out Joe Biden. Tommy Tuberville obliterated Doug Jones.

Alabama’s congressional representation has a series of races with no opponent, token opponents or races that were decided in the GOP primary.

So, luckily, Alabama had great turnout and no problems.

Elsewhere, problems with vote counting and vote deadlines have created controversy nationwide.

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If anyone is watching what is happening right now around the country and asking for more of this headache, they are out of their mind.

Early voting and mail-in voting have created mistrust that will be with us for a while.

Currently, Alabama does not have early voting, but we do have absentee voting — some of which is done in person.

So, of course, Alabama State Rep. John Rogers (D-Birmingham) has a plan.

Rogers told WBRC, “It’s a constitutional right to have the right to vote and we should make it easier. By early voting you make it easier for folks to get to the polls and vote.”

Over 62% of Alabamians were able to vote this year; no one has presented a single incident of voter suppression or a lack of voting opportunities. This is a solution in search of a problem.

But kudos to Rogers. At least he is trying to pass a law. Most states who changed their voting systems did it through judicial tyranny.

State Sen. Sam Givhan (R-Huntsville) appeared on WVNN Tuesday morning and made it pretty clear that we are not about to expand these options that are creating problems elsewhere.

Givhan said Alabama isn’t about to open the door further like he believes some states will.

Hee added, “We are, in Alabama, going to see certainly some legislation coming forward trying to have more accountability.”

My takeaway:

Givhan’s frustration is palpable, and it’s not just him. Republican voters, right or wrong, feel screwed right now.

Go read Facebook. This is a reality.

Conservatives feel screwed by the media and screwed by a court system that opened the door wide for all types of potential shenanigans.

Why would we invite more of the issues we have witnessed this year?

There will be a big push for the expansion of early and mail-in voting across the country. The media and their Democrats will demand it.

Republicans should resist because this has already gotten out of control. The states that allow this will be hard-pressed to unring that bell.

There is no reason for Alabama to go further than we have gone already. Instead, we should start pushing the rest of the nation to be more like Alabama.

Listen:

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

2 weeks ago

7 Things: Some are hopeful for vaccine while others downplay it, election drama goes on, Alabama and Auburn may not play this weekend and more …

(YHN)

7. Secretary of Defense fired

  • President Donald Trump went on Twitter Tuesday to fire Secretary of Defense Mike Esper, simply posting, “Mike Esper has been terminated. I would like to thank him for his service.” It’s been reported that Esper was aware before the tweet was posted.
  • This announcement caught many off-guard, as the reason for Esper’s firing was not immediately clear, but five months ago, Esper opposed using the Insurrection Act to respond to civil unrest across the country. Trump has announced that Christopher C. Miller will take over as “Acting Secretary of Defense, effective immediately.”

6. Alabama could give assistance to states still counting

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  • As Georgia has come under criticism for not being able to deliver their election results yet, Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill has said that they’ve reached out to both Georgia Governor Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.
  • Merrill said he’s expressed his “interest and enthusiasm in providing assistance, if necessary, with the closing of their General Election or upcoming Runoff Election for January 5. That offer for assistance remains for them to consider, and we wish them the best in the execution of their Runoff and look forward to a successful result.”

5. Joe Manchin throws massive monkey wrench in Democrats’ plans

  • Democrats’ hope for control of the U.S. Senate hinges on what happens in two Georgia U.S. Senate runoffs over the next two months, and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has made it clear what his agenda is. He advised, “Now we take Georgia, then we change the world.”
  • Unfortunately for Schumer, moderate U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) has made it clear that even if Democrats take both Georgia Senate seats, he will not vote to end the filibuster or pack the courts. Without those two measures passing, Democrats’ hopes of higher taxes, D.C. statehood or implementation of the Green New Deal seem all but impossible.

4. Auburn game postponed, Alabama game in jeopardy

  • Due to a large number of positive coronavirus cases in the Mississippi State football program, the Auburn University vs Mississippi State football game scheduled for this weekend has been postponed until December 12.
  • The University of Alabama is set to play LSU this weekend, but it’s been announced that LSU is currently dealing with a number of positive coronavirus cases. The game hasn’t officially been postponed or canceled, but it’s considered to be in “jeopardy.”

3. Barr ready to investigate voter fraud as the American media demands it never happen

  • As the American media fights any attempts to look into allegations of voter fraud by declaring there is none, Attorney General William Barr has now authorized federal prosecutors to go after voting irregularities during the 2020 election. He believes it should be done before the results are certified.
  • U.S. Representative Terri Sewell (D-Birmingham) has said that if there’s a recount of the votes for the presidential election, it will only result in former Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) receiving more votes. She said that “all lawful votes should be counted.”

2. Hate the vaccine because Trump advocated for it

  • As it’s been announced that the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine appears to be 90% effective, reactions are pouring in from many who refuse to be happy about this news since it happened during the time of a Trump presidency.
  • New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) described this as “good and bad news,” adding that the “administration is rolling out the vaccination plan and I believe it’s flawed. …They’re basically going to have the private providers do it, and that’s going to leave out all sorts of communities that were left out the first time when COVID ravaged them.”

1. New vaccine shows major promise

  • The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine has been reported to be 90% effective. UAB vaccine expert Dr. Paul Geopfert, M.D., said this is “tremendous news,” adding that some of the “most optimistic of us were thinking about 70% effective” is what would be achieved.
  • There had previously been speculation by researchers that because the vaccine for the coronavirus was being developed so quickly, it could result in it only being 60-70% effective, but obviously this vaccine is showing greater promise than that.

2 weeks ago

7 Things: Conflicting reports on Trump conceding, Biden projected by the media to win the presidency, Mo Brooks continue to push Trump to fight for transparency and more …

(YHN)

7. The coronavirus pandemic must be over

  • As news about the election results had been announced and the race was called, naming former Vice President Joe Biden the president-elect, people across the country celebrated by holding large demonstrations in the streets with no social distancing.
  • These celebrations were mainly held in New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., but Biden has already been criticized for not speaking on these events as he has regularly advocated for listening to science in regards to the coronavirus pandemic.

6. Biden to push for more masks

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  • Reportedly, one of Joe Biden’s first plans as President of the United States will be to push for more masks, but he has said he plans on doing it by going to governors and mayors to get it done, instead of a federal mask order.
  • The fact that Biden is suggesting this is not all that surprising, given that he talked about it during the election, but even he has admitted in the past that it is probably unconstitutional for a president to do a national mask order.

5. Ivey wants to make sure we had a legitimate process

  • As there is still a level of uncertainty surrounding the presidential election results, many are supporting investigations into votes and recounts in some states. Governor Kay Ivey has stated support for ensuring the process was done correctly.
  • Ivey said, “Every legal vote should be counted, and all sides should have the ability to observe the process.” She also added, “The courts are there to apply the rule of law and ensure we had a fair and free election. The people of Alabama and our county deserve to know that we had a legitimate process.”

4. Doug Jones could be Attorney General

  • As former Vice President Joe Biden has been announced as the projected winner of the 2020 presidential election, there are now reports that U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) could be appointed to U.S. Attorney General in a Biden administration.
  • Politico reported that Jones is currently the frontrunner for the position. Biden and Jones have been friends as far back as 1988, when Jones worked on Biden’s first presidential campaign.

3. Brooks won’t ratify Biden victory

  • U.S. Representative Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) posted a message over the weekend where he encouraged President Donald Trump to “fight Biden’s unlawful victory claims.” Brooks added that there’s “no way” he’ll “vote in the House to ratify the Electoral College votes of states where illegal votes distorted the will of the people in those states who voted legally.”
  • Brooks is not the only Republican urging President Trump to continue fighting. U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) stated, “If Republicans don’t challenge and change the U.S. election system, there will never be another Republican president elected again.”

2. Biden the projected winner

  • Former Vice President Joe Biden has been declared the president-elect and U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) the vice president-elect, and while the results still aren’t considered absolutely official, it’s unlikely for the outcome to change.
  • President Donald Trump has brought up legal challenges over the election results in multiple states. By December 8, all state legal challenges and recounts have to be completed, and electoral college votes won’t be counted by the House and Senate until January 6, 2021.

1. Trump may or may not concede

  • As former Vice President Joe Biden has been declared the projected winner of the presidential election and delivered a victory speech, now there are questions about if President Donald Trump will concede with reports indicating that he will and others saying he won’t.
  • Rudy Guiliani held a news conference in Philadelphia where he insisted that Trump is “not going to concede when at least 600,000 ballots are in question,” and while there are currently legal challenges Trump is pursuing in multiple states. Other reports indicate that Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump and even Melania Trump have suggested that President Trump concede the election as most legal experts believe that it’s unlikely for the results of the election to be changed.

2 weeks ago

VIDEO: More people lose faith in our elections, Senator-elect Tuberville destroys Doug Jones, Alabama Democrats continue to lose ground and more on Alabama Politics This Week

Radio talk show host Dale Jackson and Alabama Democratic Executive Committee member Lisa Handback take you through Alabama’s biggest political stories, including:

— After the last two presidential elections, will anyone trust the results ever again?

— How did U.S. Senator-elect Tommy Tuberville gain such a decisive victory over U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-AL)?

— Has the Alabama Democratic Party learned anything in the last few years, or did Senator Jones’ victory give them false hope?

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Jackson and Handback are joined by a co-chairman of Tommy Tuberville’s Senate campaign to discuss his huge victory and who he sees as a potential candidate for U.S. Senator Richard Shelby’s (R-AL) Senate seat if he were to retire.

Jackson closes the show with a “parting shot” at those who don’t understand that the way early voting and mail-in voting is done is destroying the faith in our electoral system.

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

3 weeks ago

Could a name already be emerging if an Alabama U.S. Senate seat is open in 2022?

(Pixabay, YHN)

The Doug Jones mistake has been rectified, and Alabama now has two U.S. Senators that represent the widely-held beliefs of its people.

But, what about 2022? Too soon?

With U.S. Senator-elect Tommy Tuberville’s big win, Alabama Democrats have to feel less confident than ever while many Republicans in the state will feel emboldened.

Who will look towards 2022 for statewide office? Who will look at heading to Washington, D.C. to fill the huge shoes of senior Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) if he retires as is being rumored?

One name is already being thrown out by Stan McDonald, who served as Tommy Tuberville’s campaign chairman, and he is already prepared to support that candidate.

That candidate? U.S. Representative Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville).

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During an appearance on Yellowhammer News’ “Alabama Politics This Week,” McDonald was asked about who he sees running in 2022 if Shelby does retire.

He then gave three versions of Mo Brooks’ name.

https://business.facebook.com/watch/?v=413416973227019

Could McDonald helm the campaign of two straight U.S. Senators?

It’s possible.

McDonald referenced Alabama Democratic Party Chairman and State Representative Christopher England (D-Tuscaloosa) and State House Minority Leader Anthony Daniels (D-Huntsville) as potential Democratic nominees for the seat. Will these men give up their safe seats to chase a fools’ errand? Unlikely.

Brooks was asked about McDonald’s comments Friday on WVNN’s “The Dale Jackson Show.”

The North Alabama lawmaker said he thinks many people will ask Shelby to stay on and continue as chair of the powerful Appropriations Committee. He added that as of now he plans to run for reelection to his House seat in North Alabama, but he will consider it.

“We’ll have to see if the circumstances are such that I believe I can better serve my country in the Senate in the 2022 election cycle,” Brooks advised.

My takeaway:

Brooks could run, but expect that if Shelby does retire, there will be a large spirited debate about who will best represent Alabama in the future.

Listen:

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 AM weekdays on WVNN.

3 weeks ago

7 Things: Biden says he will win as Trump claims fraud, Ivey extends mask mandate but lessens restrictions, Brooks thinks Alabama does voting right and more …

(YHN)

7. Alabama police officer under investigation for social media post

  • Flomaton Police Captain Scott Walden commented on a post that said “idiots that voted for Biden hated Trump enough to throw the country away.” Walden replied, “[T]hey need to line up ev1 [every one] of them and put a bullet in their skull for treason.”
  • Walden has attempted to defend his comments by saying that he was only speaking about those who commit treason, despite his comment being in direct relation to those who voted for former Vice President Joe Biden. The Flomaton Police Department has said that Walden’s comments are currently under investigation.

6. Ivey met with Tuberville

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  • As former Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville has been elected the next member of the U.S. Senate from Alabama, Governor Kay Ivey met with Tuberville in her office to congratulate him.
  • On Twitter, Ivey said it was her “honor to welcome Alabama’s Senator-Elect.” She added that they “had a productive conversation about AL’s priorities. His victory ensures that our values are represented in D.C. & that we keep Republican control of the U.S. Senate.”

5. More states should run like Alabama

  • Election results are yet to be finalized in several states, and now U.S. Representative Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) has said that other states could instead take some notes from Alabama on how to run their elections to make sure they have the results in a timely manner.
  • In a Facebook post, Brooks said other states should do what Alabama does, which is “require voter ID, have absentee voting with strict deadlines before Election Day…Unlike in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arizona, Wisconsin, and Michigan, the integrity of Alabama’s elections are not in question.”

4. NFIB: Ivey helping in every way she can

  • Starting on November 8, some restrictions for capacity will be lifted on businesses across the state of Alabama due to Governor Kay Ivey altering the “Safer-At-Home” order. National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) Alabama State Director Rosemary Elebash has praised Ivey for this decision.
  • In a statement, Elebash said that she wanted to “thank Governor Ivey for doing everything she can to help small businesses get through this crisis and avoid cutting jobs and closing their doors for good.”

3. Mask mandate extended

  • Governor Kay Ivey has announced that she’s extended the “Safer-At-Home” order, which includes the statewide mask mandate, until at least December 11, but some restrictions on businesses have been removed.
  • Beginning on November 8, entertainment venues, gyms and retailers won’t be required to have capacity limits. Other establishments like restaurants and salons can start offering close contact service, within 6 feet, as long as there are “impermeable barriers” in place.

2. Biden confident that he’ll win

  • Former Vice President Joe Biden spoke to reporters and said that he and U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) “continue to feel very good about where things stand. And we have no doubt that when the count is finished, Senator Harris and I will be the winners.”
  • Biden pointed out that every “ballot must be counted and that’s what is going on now…Democracy is sometimes messy, so sometimes it requires a little patience.”

1. Trump shows he is in this fight for the long haul

  • As the election counts go on, Georgia has now moved to Biden after the same thing happened in Michigan and Wisconsin moved as well. President Donald Trump held a press conference at the White House Thursday where he said that he’s won the election if you only count the “legal” votes. He also laid out a series of complaints about voting and counting that has happened over the last few days.
  • Trump went on to accuse media polling of being “election interference” and “suppression polls.” He claimed that they falsely created momentum for Biden.