Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 14, 2016

Crowded GOP Race Expected in Bachus District | #AL06

Bachus is retiring at the end of this Congress. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

GOP Rep. Spencer Bachus’ retirement from Alabama’s 6th District will likely spark a crowded GOP primary in 2014 to succeed him. A host of GOP candidates are expected run — many of whom have been waiting for his exit for two decades.

Alabama Republican operatives say the race is likely to include a wide array of candidates, from tea party stalwarts to popular state legislators in this heavily Republican district located in suburban Birmingham.

Potential Republican candidates include:

  • State Sen. Cam Ward, who served as Bachus’ district director in the late 1990s before leaving to run for the state legislature.
  • State Sen. Scott Beason, a member of the tea party who waged an unsuccessful primary challenge to Bachus in 2012.
  • Alabama Republican Party Chairman Bill Armistead, a social conservative who used to serve in Ward’s state Senate seat.
  • State Rep. Jack Williams, chairman of Alabama’s House Commerce Committee.
  • State Rep. Paul DeMarco, chairman of Alabama’s House Judiciary Committee.
  • State Sen. Slade Blackwell, whose district is located in the most affluent part of the 6th District.
  • Cliff Sims, president and CEO of Yellowhammer Politics, a political blog in Alabama.
  • Chad Mathis, an orthopedic surgeon and member of the tea party.

The field will likely winnow because state lawmakers are up for re-election in 2014 as well. They cannot run for two positions on the ballot in the same cycle.

“It’s not a free shot,” one Alabama Republican consultant said. “That’s certainly a calculus for these guys.”

The next member of Congress will be selected in the GOP primary — Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney won the district with 74 percent in 2012.

Alabama’s 6th District is rated a Safe Republican seat by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

  • Igor Shafarevich

    Since our minds cannot predict their own future, civilization’s advance consists of learning from our mistakes, taking into account the lessons of accidents, and making the most of the fleeting circumstances we are faced with.

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