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McClendon will primary Fielding in Senate District 11

Rep. Jim McClendon (R – Springville) will officially announce tomorrow that he will challenge fellow Republican Jerry Fielding (R – Sylacauga) in the Senate District 11 GOP primary in 2014.

Fielding was a long-time Democrat who was elected to the Alabama Senate in 2010 after previously serving as a District Judge. He was one of the few bright spots for the Democrats in the 2010 cycle that swept Republicans into power in almost every corner of the state, but he switched parties to become a Republican in October of 2012. He has since been a reliable vote for Republicans in the Senate.

Yellowhammer pointed out last fall that McClendon was gearing up to challenge Fielding, but with Fielding switching parties to become a Republican, McClendon will now be taking him on in the primary instead of the general election.

“While I have enjoyed my 11 years in the Alabama House and our successful efforts to implement historic change, create thousands of jobs and promote conservative policies in state government, I know I can be even more effective as a member of the State Senate,” McClendon said. “I am known for standing for what I believe and I’ll work everyday to give the three counties of Senate District 11 the strongest possible representation.”

McClendon currently serves as chairman of the House Health Committee. He and Senate Health Committee Chairman Greg Reed spearheaded the GOP’s efforts to reform Medicaid during the 2013 legislative session.

He also served as chairman of the House Ethics Committee during the 2010 Special Session on Ethics, and is House chair of the Redistricting Committee, which redrew congressional, legislative and state school board districts in 2012.

The Republican primary for the District 11 Senate seat, which comprises portions of St. Clair, Shelby and Talladega counties, is schedule for June 4, 2014.

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