Merrill: ‘Not one time’ has Sessions mentioned to me that he might run for his old Senate seat
Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill was interviewed Thursday on Talk 99.5’s “Matt & Aunie Show” about his Republican bid for the U.S. Senate in 2020, among other topics of state and national interest.
After discussing impeachment efforts against President Donald Trump, Merrill was asked by co-host Matt Murphy about the potential of former Attorney General Jeff Sessions jumping into the race in an effort to reclaim his old seat, which is now held by Senator Doug Jones (D-AL).
Merrill called the rumors swirling around Sessions “the elephant in the room.”
“I don’t know any more than anyone else about whether or not Senator Sessions is going to choose to enter the fray,” Merrill advised. “You know, I’ve been with him a couple of times in the last month and have had great conversations with him. Not one time did he mention to me that he might be interested in coming back and retaining his old Senate seat.”
“I think that it’s pretty clear that if he chooses to become a candidate, that everybody in the nation will know it because as the former attorney general, that will receive national coverage,” he continued. “I think it’s been interesting — I’ve been interviewed by NBC News and by CNN, as well as a number of people from our state, and all of these folks that have interviewed me and interviewed other people and gotten comments have all failed to interview one person: Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, III.”
Merrill noted that everyone will finally get their answer by 5:00 p.m. this coming Friday, which marks the end of qualifying for the March 3 GOP primary.
The secretary of state added that he and his campaign team are “comfortable” with their own current position and prospects in the race.
“[W]e continue to move across all 67 counties,” Merrill said. “No candidate in this race has got the field group that we’ve got — our grassroots organization is superior to all the others and we’ve got 67 county chairs across Alabama. As of today, I personally have been to 61 of the 67 counties [in 2019]. This will be the seventh year in a row that I’ve been to all 67 counties, which is why our grassroots organization is so strong. I’ve made 523 unique visits to those 61 counties that I’ve been to [this year]. We’ll continue to push our message out all across the state. And we’re excited about where we are and where we will be on March the 3rd.”
Listen to the full interview:
Merrill is running in a crowded Republican field that currently includes former Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville, Congressman Bradley Byrne (AL-01), former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore and State Rep. Arnold Mooney (R-Indian Springs).
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn