April 2, 2018

The Future of Alabama

No single day on the campaign trail is identical to another, but this past Thursday was something of a typicaland diverseday on the trail. Buckle up and go for a ride with us.

We left Huntsville at 5:45 a.m. and went to Birmingham to a breakfast meeting at Famous Fred’s with my dad and his group of friends. That’s a good group, and they keep you grounded and humble. We did a straw poll there and we won 26 to zero to zero to zero. Now, some people might question the methodology, but it was our poll!  That said, we gave away a cake to the person who voted most often, and my dad won the cake. But that was just our early April Fools’ joke on him.

After breakfast, we met with some Birmingham area young professionals who are volunteering for us. We had a great conversation about our campaign and my vision and plan for Alabama.  It’ll be a boost to have all that millennial energy and imagination working to help put us over the top.

I was invited to speak to the Samford University Young Republicans. They told us over and over what they wanted to see in the future of Alabama. They have big concerns about employment opportunities here in the state for themselves and their friends after they graduate. We’ve been able to transform Huntsville into a place where young people are moving to, instead of away from, because of our job market and quality of life, and I assured them we can apply those same principles across the state.

  

After the feast, we visited the Goodgame Company, which is one of Alabama’s great business success stories. W.A. Goodgame started it 57 years ago as a simple welding shop. They’ve grown to become a huge construction company with business all over the region. Mr. Goodgame and his son, Jason, welcomed us there for a meet-and-greet with the office staff.

  

Finally, there were two newspaper editorial board meetings. This is a standard part of a campaign, where we meet with publishers, editors and writers and often dive deeply into a lot of issues. It helps them make their endorsements of candidates, and it’s a good way for us to get our message out.

We sat down at the St. Clair County Times with Anthony Cook, an old friend from his days at the AL.com office in Huntsville, and two others on his staff. They asked tough but fair questions on a variety of matters.

We went straight from there to the St. Clair News-Aegis, and sat with Urainah Glidewell and Darren Spears. Darren had done more background on the Battle Administration than most reporters I’ve met on the campaign. He turned out to be a veteran who had just returned to Alabama. I want to thank him for his service to our country.

  

I was blown away by the support I received throughout the day. People telling me over and over “I’m in.”

What a great way to end a day on the campaign trail, with somebody else saying, “I’m in.”

No word yet from the Governor or her people about when and where we will see each other on the campaign trail to discuss our vision and plan for the future of our great state. We’re committing to events throughout April and the Governor knows where we’ll be.