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Marshall County voters to narrow GOP field in Alabama House special election

Today, voters across Marshall County are heading to the polls to decide their next State Representative for House District 27 after State Sen. Wes Kitchens (R-Arab) was elected to District 9 in a January special election. 

HD27, which covers large portions of Guntersville and Arab, has attracted a field of several Republican candidates making their case to voters in a race expected to see lower turnout than a Huntsville-area HD10 election in March that turned the district blue until 2026. 

In total, six candidates qualified, including former Alabama Secretary of Early Childhood Education and 26-year veteran educator Jeana Ross, Arab City Councilman Alan Miller, automotive salesman Bill Hancock, mainstay of Alabama politics Stacy George, former Marshall County Commissioner Bill Stricklen, as well as Billy Ray Todd, a U.S. Army veteran who chronicled his run for office to a large online following. 

RELATED: Kitchens cooks win in state Senate special election – ‘this district is my home’

Ross said her campaign has been an encouraging, grassroots effort that she and volunteers have taken a message of conservative Alabama values directly to voters. 

I am proud to be a life-long resident of Marshall County. As one of the state’s fastest growing counties we are building wonderful communities while staying true to our values. Professionally, I’ve been a part of programs in each of our school systems and worked to ensure children and families have the highest quality education and resources available,” Ross told Yellowhammer News. 

“After 8 years in Montgomery I have learned how to get things done. I look forward to delivering results to keep Marshall County a great place to live, work and worship.” 

Ross has the support of a key constituent who previously served as the State Representative for HD27, now Lt. Governor of Alabama, Will Ainsworth. 

Bill Hancock, a 25-year small business owner of a local car dealership, says Marshall County means everything to him because he was born and raised here.

My platform is small business and workforce development, because that’s what I’ve experienced. Being a small business owner for 25 years, the main thing that we see is finding good employees. Good, hard working people is just hard to find, Hancock said.

”We have an opportunity with our Career Tech Center, that we have grown tremendously in the last three and a half years…What we’re seeing is in the Career Tech Center, the kids that were able to get involved in that, they’re actually able to graduate high school with a two-year trade degree from sleep state and go straight into the workforce. Being a business owner, I see how that positively impacts me.

RELATED: Jeana Ross, key leader in Alabama’s Pre-K success, enters House District 27 race

Arab Councilman Alan Miller said he ran because he wants to give back to a community that means a lot to him. 

“The voters of this district want someone with common sense to go to Montgomery and advocate on their behalf. They want their representatives to bring their tax dollars back into the district to improve their community,” Miller told Yellowhammer News. “They want someone who will stand up for their values and not allow themselves to be bought by special interest groups that don’t care about their wishes for their district. That’s the core of what this entire campaign has been about.”

Billy Ray Todd, a U.S. Army veteran and South Alabama native who made headlines for being attacked in Walmart by a super liberal woman enraged by views he shared while campaigning, said he was motivated by a number of political and personal reasons to run for the Alabama House.

“In November of 2022 I watched how a local Democrat councilman, NAACP and Southern Poverty Law Center falsely accused two teachers and coach of racism to push DEI in Guntersville High School. I stood up for those teachers. Even after being threatened by the local democrat councilman, he threatened to have me arrested by local police and FBI if I showed up to any town hall meetings,” Todd said. 

RELATED: Alabama political candidate attacked by ‘super liberal’ while campaigning – ‘she charged at me’

“The citizens HD27 are concerned about the quality of education and with the threat of marxism being taught in classes,” he added. 

With six Republican candidates in the race, a special runoff election would be held on April 30 if a single candidate isn’t able to secure 50% of the vote. In the case of a runoff, Hancock said he hopes all registered voters will show up and make their voice heard.

That is your only voice to what contributes to our way of life — continuing the way it is or getting better or getting worse is based on people vote sending the right people to the right place,” he said. 

Ross, who leads the pack in fundraising by leaps and bounds, said in the case of a runoff election — the choice is clear.

“I’m the right person for the job. I have the experience, both as an educator and while working for Governor Kay Ivey to get things done in Montgomery. I’ll partner with Senator Wes Kitchens to make sure Marshall County always gets its fair share.”

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

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