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December 18, 2013

6 Things to Know About Rep.-Elect Bradley Byrne

6 Things to Know About Rep. Elect Bradley Byrne

Byrne is coming to Congress. (Sharon Steinmann/Associated Press File Photo)

Former state Sen. Bradley Byrne, a Republican, coasted to victory Tuesday night in Alabama’s 1st District special election, easily defeating his Democratic opponent, real estate agent Burton LeFlore.

Byrne succeeds former GOP Rep. Jo Bonner, who resigned over the summer to take a job with the University of Alabama system.

Officials will not swear Byrne into Congress until the new year because the House has already left for the holiday recess. In the meantime, here are six things to know about the newest member of Congress.

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December 17, 2013

Bradley Byrne Wins Alabama Special Election for House

Bradley Byrne Wins Alabama Special Election for House

Byrne is coming to Congress. (Sharon Steinmann/Associated Press File Photo)

Former state Sen. Bradley Byrne, a Republican, coasted to victory in Alabama’s 1st District special election on Tuesday night, easily defeating Democrat Burton LeFlore in the final congressional special election of 2013.

Byrne defeated LeFlore, 62 percent to 38 percent, with 50 percent of precincts reporting, according to the Associated Press.

In November, Byrne defeated tea-party-aligned businessman Dean Young by 4 points in the competitive GOP runoff that served as a bellwether in the fight for control of the Republican Party. The U.S.Chamber of Commerce aided Byrnemarking the first victory for business in the battle for control of the party.

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November 5, 2013

Byrne and Business Prevail in Alabama Special

Former state Sen. Bradley Byrne defeated tea-party-backed candidate Dean Young in a special GOP runoff in Alabama’s 1st District on Tuesday, marking the first big win for more moderate Republicans in the fight for control of the GOP since the government shutdown.

With 91 percent of precincts reporting, Byrne led Young, 53 percent to 47 percent, according to The Associated Press.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business-oriented groups, such as TD Ameritrade founder Joe Ricketts’ Ending Spending PAC, spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in the final days of the contest to ensure a Byrne victory.

The win sends a message to the tea party that business groups are willing to play in GOP primaries to send more pragmatic, business-minded Republicans to Congress.

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November 4, 2013

Alabama Special Election Is Proxy Battle for National GOP

With one day until the special-election runoff in Alabama’s 1st District, conservative groups are making a final push to affect the GOP contest that has become a national bellwether for Republicans.

Business groups are trying to boost former state Sen. Bradley Byrne over Dean Young, a tea-party-backed businessman who’s already made some controversial comments. Over the weekend, Ending Spending Inc., a PAC launched in 2010 by TD Ameritrade founder Joe Ricketts, spent $102,000 in ads to promote Byrne, according to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.

“Who can you trust with your money? Career politician Dean Young started numerous PACs, then paid most of the money raised to his own company,” says the ad.

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October 29, 2013

Chamber of Commerce Battles Tea Party in Alabama Special Election

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, a group that regularly spends millions to boost business-friendly congressional candidates, will endorse former state Sen. Bradley Byrne in Alabama’s 1st District special election on Tuesday.

The chamber will endorse Byrne over GOP businessman Dean Young, a social conservative whose views align with the tea party movement, in the Nov. 5 GOP primary runoff to replace former Rep. Jo Bonner, R-Ala.

The Byrne endorsement marks the chamber’s first big move to combat tea party conservatives in the GOP whom they blame — along with many Americans — for the shutdown of the U.S. government earlier this month.

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September 25, 2013

Social Conservatism Rebounds in Special-Election Primary | #AL01

An under-the-radar Alabama special election might have paved the way for one of the most outspoken, socially conservative Republicans yet to ascend to the House: businessman Dean Young.

“This race shows that this is the Deep South, and that social conservatives win races down here,” said Alabama Republican consultant Bob Kish. “This isn’t North Carolina or Virginia. This is the Deep, Deep South where people go to church twice a week, on Wednesdays and Sundays, so it’s pretty conservative society.”

On Tuesday night, Young and former state Sen. Bradley Byrne made it into a GOP runoff for the 1st District nomination. Byrne, a 2010 gubernatorial candidate, had the most money and highest name identification of the nine Republicans running in the primary and took 35 percent. But Young stunned Republicans by garnering 23 percent and earning the second spot on the Nov. 5 runoff ballot.  Full story

September 24, 2013

Byrne, Young Advance to Runoff in Alabama Special Election | #AL01

Former state Sen. Bradley Byrne and businessman Dean Young advanced to a runoff in Alabama’s 1st District on Tuesday night, emerging from a crowded GOP special-election primary.

Byrne — who lost a GOP primary for governor in Alabama in 2010 — received 33 percent, while Young received 25 percent, with 61 percent of precincts reporting, according to The Associated Press.

Both will face off in a Nov. 5 GOP runoff election, which is expected to pick the district’s next member of Congress in this conservative House district. Full story

September 19, 2013

Sharron Angle’s Super PAC Buys Airtime in Alabama Special | #AL01

Sharron Angles Super PAC Buys Airtime in Alabama Special | #AL01

Angle lost a bid for Senate in 2010. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A super PAC launched by failed Nevada GOP Senate nominee Sharron Angle has waded into the upcoming Alabama special election, making a small television buy to boost one of the Republican candidates in the crowded field.

Our Voice PAC placed a $10,000 buy on cable in the district to aid Dean Young, a businessman running in Tuesday’s 1st District special election, according to a 1st District source with knowledge of the buy. Young is one of five Republicans looking to succeed former Rep. Jo Bonner, who resigned in August to take a job with the University of Alabama system.

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September 17, 2013

Special-Election Candidate Trashes Obamacare in New TV Ad | #AL01

Former Republican National Committee aide Wells Griffith, a candidate in Alabama’s 1st District special election, released his second television spot on Tuesday — one week out from the primary.

In the 30-second spot, Griffith throws a thick pile of Obamacare pages in the trash bin and says that repealing the law is why he decided to run for the seat. The campaign spent about $18,000 on the ad, according to a source with knowledge of ad buys in the district.

“This document, Obamacare, is why I’m running for Congress. Because we won’t get back to creating jobs until these thousands of pages of economic destruction are relegated to the trash pile of history,” Griffith says in the ad.

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September 16, 2013

Republican Blasts Spending ‘Boondoggles’ in Special Election Spot | #AL01

Former state Sen. Bradley Byrne released his second advertisement in the crowded special primary for Alabama’s 1st District on Monday —  a week before voters head to the polls.

The $60,000 buy, split between broadcast and cable television, seeks to contrast Byrne with President Barack Obama by citing government spending on “robotic squirrels,” “money for a circus foundation,” and a “futuristic food menu from Mars.”

“Obama’s wasted billions of dollars on boondoggles,” Byrne says in the spot that will run through the Sept. 24 GOP primary, according to his campaign.

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September 13, 2013

Conservative PAC Wades Into Alabama Special | #AL01

Citizens United Political Victory Fund, a PAC that supports candidates who embody conservative principles, announced on Friday that it will run a $25,000 radio ad in support of Quin Hillyer, a candidate in Alabama’s upcoming 1st District special election.

The 30-second radio ad, which will run up until a day before the Sept. 24 primary, features former Sen. Rick Santorum touting Hillyer’s conservative values. Santorum endorsed Hillyer’s campaign early in the special election.

“Hi, this is Senator Rick Santorum and I’m proud to support a true conservative – Quin Hillyer for Congress – because he shares my values,” Santorum says in the ad.

Byrne Leads Special Election Fundraising Race | #AL01

Former state Sen. Bradley Byrne far outraised the crowded GOP primary field in the special election to replace former Rep. Jo Bonner in Alabama’s 1st District.

Byrne, who ran an unsuccessful campaign for governor in 2010, raised $241,363 between July 1 and Sept. 4 and has $183,629 cash on hand going into the Sept. 24 primary, according to his filing with the Federal Elections Commission.

Byrne’s haul is nearly $80,000 more than former Republican National Committee aide Wells Griffith. He raised the second-highest amount at $162,250 in the same period and has $87,730 in cash on hand, according to his FEC filing.

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September 5, 2013

Special-Election Candidates Start Buying TV Time in Mobile | #AL01

Wells Griffith, a Republican candidate in Alabama’s 1st District special election, went up with his first television ad on Thursday, less than a month before the Sept. 24 primary.

The 30-second “positive” spot will air on broadcast and cable stations throughout the district, and highlights Griffith’s ties to the 1st District, where his family has owned a full-service gas station for generations. The campaign spent $12,500 on the ad, according to a source with knowledge of ad buys in the district.

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August 29, 2013

Ad War Heats Up in Alabama House Special | #AL01

Former state Sen. Bradley Byrne announced Thursday that he will be up with his first television ad in Alabama’s 1st District special election, highlighting his work as a public servant to clean up the state’s community college system.

The $47,000, positive spot will air on broadcast for the week beginning Sept. 3, and on cable beginning Friday through Sept. 9.

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August 28, 2013

GOPAC Goes Up With Ad in Alabama House Special | #AL01

GOPAC, an organization that seeks to build a Republican bench of candidates, released a 30-second television ad on Wednesday in support of state Rep. Chad Fincher, a candidate in the upcoming Alabama House special election.

The $30,000 cable and broadcast television ad buy touts Fincher’s conservative record of taking on teachers unions.

“Rep. Fincher has a long record of fighting for conservative policies and sound economic principles,” GOPAC Chairman Frank Donatelli said in a news release. “We know that he is a tested leader and does not back down from a fight against liberal special interests. We need his continued leadership in Washington.”

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