Trump critic wins hotly-contested runoff election in Alabama

Alabama GOP congresswoman Martha Roby breezed to victory Tuesday evening in a runoff to return to Congress, defeating a challenge mounted by former mayor of Montgomery, Bobby Bright.

In defeating Bright, the man she had ousted in 2010 to first earn her seat in the House, Roby amassed 68 percent of the vote to Bright’s 32 percent.

In a sometimes-emotional address to supporters on election night, Roby declared:

“It’s been a true privilege to have the support of the White House through this campaign.  I am so humbled that the people of Alabama’s 2nd Congressional District have again placed their trust and their confidence in me.”

A four-term congresswoman, Roby faced four Republican opponents in the June 5 primary, owing to the fact she had denounced then-candidate Trump following the October 2016 release of the now-infamous “Access Hollywood” tape.

On video, Trump was captured describing his sexual prowess, recounting his attempt to seduce a married woman and uttering vulgarities which included an account of his grasping a woman’s genitalia.

The tape created a firestorm of controversy and inspired Roby to demand the then-presidential candidate to drop from the race.

Despite facing a backlash from her constituents as a “Never Trump Republican,” Roby never retreated from her stance, but was returned to Washington in November 2016.

Although Roby’s position over Trump’s crass remarks caused friction with the White House, both Trump and Roby carefully mended the relationship, but Roby earned Trump’s endorsement only after she had survived the primary and emerged as the front-runner in the runoff.

In spite of the fact Trump withheld an endorsement, Roby’s opponent, a Democrat-turned-Republican, Bobby Bright, struggled to connect with voters, largely because of his 2009 vote in Congress to return Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to the position of speaker of the House.

Roby is heavily favored to win the November election against Democratic opponent Tabitha Isner.

 

[AP] [Roll Call] [Photo courtesy KEVIN D. LILES/New York Times via Atlanta Journal Constitution]