Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 7, 2016

Alabama Runoff Results: Gary Palmer Wins Republican Nomination (Video)

alabama runoff

Bachus, right, is not seeking re-election. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Conservative activist Gary Palmer defeated state Rep. Paul DeMarco Tuesday to win the GOP nomination in Alabama’s 6th District.

Palmer defeated DeMarco, 62 percent to 38 percent, with 50 percent of precincts reporting, according to The Associated Press.

GOP operatives say DeMarco’s loss is partly a result of the Club for Growth’s barrage of spending in the final weeks of the runoff. The GOP nominee will almost certainly succeed Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., who is retiring from this conservative district.

In the June 3 GOP primary, DeMarco came in first in a seven-candidate field with 33 percent —  below the 50 percent threshold to avoid a runoff in the Yellowhammer State. Palmer trailed in second place with 20 percent.

But after the runoff, the club endorsed Palmer and spent more than $250,000 in television ads attacking DeMarco’s record on taxes.

The attacks, along with some other missteps from DeMarco’s campaign, boosted Palmer in the polls. About a week out, GOP operatives said Palmer looked to be cruising to an easy victory on Tuesday.

GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney won the district in 2012 with 74 percent, making it one of the strongest Republican districts in the country.

The seat is open for the first time since 1992.

Alabama’s 6th District is rated a Safe Republican contest by the Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.
  • Truth Happens

    The True Conservative once again wins out. GOP oldies blame CFG money. Poor GOP.

  • Layla

    Another one bites the dust. This is what happens when you refuse to listen to your “base”, and then lose your base. Next…

  • JohnnyAngel Advocacy Group


  • MVH1

    Club for Growth and Karl Rove are always very successful in Alabama.

  • Journalism Police

    Ms Cahn, Please note that the article states that Palmer ran ads attacking DeMarco’s record on taxes. I think this is backwards. The attack ads were DeMarco ads attacking Palmer.

  • Melody Warbington

    The Palmer campaign urged everyone to stay positive and focus on the issues and then f Id just that. He won debates, answered questions, reached out to conservatives in the GOP, tea parties and women’s groups and stuck around after events to meet the people. It was apparent he knew the issues and offered solution not just soundbites.

    DeMarco listened to poor advice and people didn’t trust him to make decisions in DC. I sincerely hope he learns from this experience. He had a lot of good supporters who say he is a good man.

    For the record, I never watched the Club4Growth ad in its entirety, however I got negative mailers directly from DeMarco’s campaign attacking Palmer almost every day of the last week. I’m proud the people in my district saw through them.

  • Mr. Sequel

    Those who harbor nefarious intentions tend to subvert freedom by insisting that the temporary views of fleeting majorities justify charting courses opposed to morality, liberty, and prosperity.

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