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Brinyark wins out West Alabama special election

A highly-competitive special primary election matched Tuscaloosa attorney and former judge Brian Brinyark with Fayette County Commissioner Brad Cox in a runoff Tuesday for the Republican nomination for House District 16.

Brinyark pulled away with a win, securing 52.75% of the vote. Cox, who has deep roots in the West Alabama agriculture community, conceded Tuesday night. 

The special called election will fill a sizable gap in the West Alabama legislative delegation left by former Rep. Kyle South, who now leads the West Alabama Chamber of Commerce.

Brinyark, a Tuscaloosa native and graduate of Central High School, has served as municipal judge for Centreville since 2005.

RELATED: Brinyark, Cox say ‘experience’ key in District 16 special election

Brinyark thanked supporters after the votes were counted. 

Brinyark now faces Democrat John Underwood in the January general election. Given the partisan composition of the district, Brinyark is on a swift track to taking office. Alabama Republican Party Chairman John Wahl congratulated Brinyark and said he’ll “look forward to working with him in the future as we mount a vigorous general election campaign.”

RELATED: BCA backs Brinyark in District 16 runoff

Cox led the vote count by a razor-thin margin during the initial primary, with he and Brinyark bringing in a combined total of 32% of the vote among several other candidates. Cox picked up numerous endorsements and reported strong fundraising totals.

House District 16 covers Fayette County and portions of Jefferson and Tuscaloosa Counties. Roughly 3,200 votes were cast in the GOP runoff. The special General Election will be Jan. 9.

Grayson Everett is the state and political editor for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @Grayson270

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