Judging a Book by Its Cover

composition-notebook-journalIt sat on the corner of my desk and they all knew where it was and it’s power…the teacher’s demerit book. It was the dreaded scorekeeper of a student’s lack of progress, behavior problems or not complying with the rules. Picking up the “D book” (really a 99 cents composition book from the Dollar Store) meant a trail of a student’s choices were documented and had consequences – from after school detention, parent phone calls or loss of break privileges. It was a force to be reckoned with if you were 11 years old.

I also celebrated those 6th graders who worked hard and were worthy of applause. I used “Student of the Week” awards, free homework passes, hall monitor privileges, ice cream captains, bulletin board buddies, teacher of the day, first in the cafeteria line and an assorted other positive reinforcements. I knew that reminding students of the good things they had done and worked toward was more powerful and longer lasting than the “D Book”.

As Republicans, we should remember the great things we have accomplished in our state and celebrate the progress. Just to name a few since the GOP became the majority Party in 2010:

– Alabama taxpayers have saved $1 billion following the actions of Governor Bentley and the GOP Legislature.

– We added more than 40,000 new jobs in Alabama and our unemployment rate is at its lowest since October 2008.

– The tax filing system was streamlined for businesses, which cut burdensome government red tape and provided businesses with a single online portal for filing taxes with the state.

– A historic prison reform package helped relieve Alabama’s prison overcrowding. The package will expand the number of community corrections officers and divert more non-violent offenders to community corrections services and require all persons leaving prisons to be supervised post-release.

– Governor Bentley refused to use Alabama taxpayer money to fund Planned Parenthood.

– The School Choice and Student Opportunity Act was implemented, which allows Alabama to join 42 other states in offering a charter school option to students and parents.

– The Student Religious Liberties Act was passed, which requires Alabama schools to allow voluntary student expression of religious viewpoints.

– A stricter tort reform package of bills aimed at preventing lawsuit abuse and improving Alabama’s court systems was passed.

– Remembering our veterans, the Heroes for Hire and the Alabama Veterans and Rural Jobs Act, both of which offer incentives for Alabama employers who hire military veterans, was put in place.

– The Alabama Republicans repealed the 62% pay raise Democrat legislators voted on for themselves prior to Republicans taking the majority.

I have been a proud Republican for almost 40 years. We have our difference of opinions, frustrations and folks who let us down from time to time. Name a family or organization that doesn’t. It is worthy for us to remember all of the positive and great things our Party stands for and herald the accomplishments that our Republican elected officials throughout the state have fought for and delivered.

Is there more to work on? Yes. Does everyone agree? No. Should we have conversations on topics? Absolutely. Will we always get the outcome we want? No. Should we fight for what we believe is right? You bet we should. Our state and nation are far better off with Republicans in charge. The sweeping GOP November 2014 elections were a powerful message. We should expect even more gains across Alabama and America in 2016.

No matter how many times I wrote a student’s name down in the “D book”, I never gave up on them, likewise, as Republicans, we will never give up on the conservative platform of the Republican Party, or our mission. It’s bigger than any one Party member, candidate or elected official. Be proud in the turnaround our state has made since 2010 with Republicans in charge and the record breaking offices we now hold in Alabama. Thank the GOP officials who volunteer to serve their state and nation. Encourage them to stay on the “right” path and continue to fight our conservative causes. Applaud them for the mighty gains we have made under their leadership. In return, we ask our officials to hear our voices and stay on a conservative path that led our way to the majority party.

Keep score of our successes, fight for corrections (from within the Party and out of it) and smile when you say “I’m a proud Republican!” There is a reason that Alabama is one of the reddest states in the nation. We have a product that people believe. Continue to guard it, build it and celebrate it. We are far better off with Republicans making the decisions for our state and nation than Democrats every day of the year.

 

SIMPLY THE BEST12115526_1080133742058416_2234949411085317408_n

The Alabama Republican Party opened candidate qualifying for the March 1, 2016 GOP primary on Monday, October 5, 2015 at 8:30 a.m. CDT and will close it on Friday, November 6, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. CST.

There is a real excitement already as we prepare for our Republican candidates to run for offices around the state. Qualifying for the delegates for the Presidential primary also opened on the same date. All information can be found here or by calling Political Director Reed Phillips at the Alabama GOP headquarters at 205.212.5900. He is also available via email at rphillips@algop.org

We are making a diligent effort to post all qualified candidates up on our website within 24 hours.

 

HERE WE GROW AGAIN

The Alabama Republican Party keeps growing with new GOP elected officials. Earlier this year we saw five elected officials from Talladega and Lauderdale counties join the GOP.
Welcome to the following new GOP members who worked with the county party chairs and committees to join with us:

Coosa County: District Judge Carlton Teel, Probate Judge Terry Mitchell and Circuit Clerk Jeff Wood

Marion County: Superintendent Ryan Hollingsworth, Board of Education member L.C. Fowler

Tallapoosa County: Circuit Clerk Patrick Craddock

More to come!

 

MIXED EMOTIONSimage1

I had conflicting emotions of being sad yet proud at the same time while standing in front of the RNC’s Resolution Committee in Cleveland, Ohio on August 2. I had submitted a resolution on the subject of defunding Planned Parenthood with taxpayer’s money AND applying the laws of our land to anyone who had broken them in the horrifying debacle the nation is watching with the PP videos. After tweaking the resolution, it passed unanimously. It will be sent to the President and all members of Congress.

It is truly one of my most memorable moments on my Republican life path. I was proud to say “I’m the Chairman from Alabama” as I shared my thoughts and made the case on the importance of this resolution being passed. Sad to think that we now know what is happening in some Planned Parenthood operations yet proud to say the Republican Party will stand up and will continue to try and stop these atrocities.

MAKING TRACKS WITH THE ALGOP

Silent AuctionWe had a huge and excited crowd at the 2015 ALGOP Summer Luncheon held at the Talladega Superspeedway. For the first time in over ten years, the Party moved one if its biannual events out of the central part of the state. Governor Scott Walker (R-WI) was our special guest speaker. The elected officials were in full-force and our sponsors were very supportive.
What an honor it was to have 100% participation from our congressional delegation – Senator Shelby, Senator Sessions, Congressman Byrne, Congresswoman Roby, Congressman Rogers, Congressman Aderholt, Congressman Brooks and Congressman Palmer.
We heard from special guests Senator Richard Shelby and Senator Jeff Sessions as well. With the generosity of Senator Shelby, we were able to rent the speedway track out so our sponsors and guests could have an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to do laps in their cars on the track.
JellyBeansThank you to our sponsors:
U.S. Senator Richard Shelby; Representative Robert Aderholt; E-Ring, Inc.; Martha Roby for Congress; ALFA; Balch & Bingham, LLP; U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions; Southern Food Brokers; Swatek, Azbell, Howe & Ross; Tom Young; YellowHammer News; 60 Plus; ACEGov; Alabama Association for Justice; Alabama Nursing Home Association; AT&T; Mo Brooks for Congress; Business Council of Alabama; Byrne for Congress; Carson for America; Tom Coker and Associates; The Cosby Group; Drummond Company, Inc.; Eli Lilly; Golden Enterprises; Judy Motlow and Judge Will Motlow; Palmer for Congress; Friends of Trip Pittman; Republican Senate Caucus; and Mike Rogers for Congress.

 

With a jelly bean presidential poll, GOP County silent auction and the track ride around, the ALGOP made the Race to 2016 a memorable event. Afterward, the ALGOP Executive Committee went into session.

 

CALLING ALABAMARick Santorum

Next up, we will host presidential candidate Senator Rick Santorum on Tuesday, October 20 at 8:00 pm CDT. Haven’t submitted your RSVP? There is still time, click here. We look forward to a wonderful conversation and direct non-filtered communications with another outstanding GOP presidential candidate.

We have had great calls the last few months, most recently with Donald Trump and Governor John Kasich. If you missed them, listen to the audio here.

 

WHAT’S HAPPENING

Click here to check out the calendar of upcoming County Party meetings.
 
October 15 & 16 – Alabama Federation of Republican Women Biennial Convention
The Alabama Federation of Republican Women will host their convention in Birmingham. Special guest speakers include Candy Carson, wife of presidential candidate, Dr. Ben Carson, and Sharon Day, RNC Co-Chair. For more information, click here.
October 16 – Alabama Federation of Republican Women Campaign School
The Alabama Federation of Republican Women will host the school in Birmingham. Holly Robichaud will lead the program. For more information, click here.
October 17 – YR Day of Action
Join Young Republicans from all over Alabama for their inaugural YR Day of Action in Montgomery. For more information, click here.
October 19 – Etowah County 27th Annual Dinner
The dinner will host Congressman Robert Aderholt as their keynote speaker and will serve Tony’s Catering for a buffet-style meal. For more information, call Sandra Lasseter, 256-328-3257.
October 24 – Hale County Fall Social
Fall social gathering in Moundville featuring Agriculture Commissioner John McMillan . More information available here.
November 5 – Montgomery County 2015 Lincoln-Reagan Dinner
MCREC brings Kris “Tanto” Paronto a member of the CIA annex security team that responded to the terrorist attack on the U.S. Special Mission in Benghazi on September 11, 2012. Find out more information here.
(NOTE: This new series will allow us to recognize and celebrate our Alabama Republican friends’ accomplishments and victories. Please send your suggestions, shout outs and congratulation mentions to megan@algop.org – Pictures are welcomed.)

 

Congrats go out to:

 

– Baldwin County YR Chairman Matthew Brown on his appointment to the Alabama Board of Education.
– Mobile County Absentee Ballott Office Coordinator Alleen Barnett on her appointment to the Voter Registration Advisory Board by Agriculture Commissioner John McMillan.
– Former Alabama YR Chairman Clayton Turner on being chosen as Chief of Staff for the Young Republican National Federation.
– Chief Assistant District Attorney C.J. Robinson for being presented the Larry E. Smith award for Assistant District Attorney of the Year in 2015.
– Coffee County Young Republicans on their recent formation. They recently held their first official meeting with Secretary of State John Merrill as their featured guest.
– Montgomery GOP Minority Chairman William Green for beating a 12-year Democrat incumbent in the race for Montgomery City Council.
– Representative Matt Fridy and his wife on their newest addition. Welcome to their new “Weepublican”.
– Mobile County member Josh Woods and his wife on their newest addition. Welcome to their new “Weepublican”.
A special thanks goes out to Madison County member Brent Beal as he heads out for four and a half months of military training and JAG school. We are proud of Brent’s service and thank him.

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