Alabama Republican Governor Kay Ivey announced on Wednesday that she will be running for reelection. In a video message released by her campaign, Gov. Ivey, who is 76. and a couple of years younger than President Biden, touted her response to the coronavirus pandemic and emphasized her administration’s investment in infrastructure, job creation, and the state’s low unemployment.
Ivey said in her charming southern drawl, “The COVID crisis has tested us all, but together we’ve met the call with the same things that make us who we are — faith, resilience and a good-old fashioned bucket load of common sense. The result: a future brighter than any other in America.”
“Here in Alabama, our government will always reflect your values, life, liberty and freedom of opportunity for every single corner of this state. Alabama is working again, and the best is yet to come,” Ivey proclaimed.
Ivey first became Governor in 2017, when as Lt. Governor, she stepped up and succeeded Gov. Robert Bentley, when he suddenly resigned in the midst of an impeachment investigation partly centered on his relationship with an aide.
Ivey is the state’s second female governor and the first Republican woman elected to the position. She handily won her first full term in 2018, even though she had been questioned about her health, and captured about 60% of the vote.
Ivey faced both praise and criticism for her handling of the pandemic. Unlike most Southern governors she issued a statewide mask order, criticized by some conservatives, and praised by health officials and others for following scientific recommendations. That state mask order has ended.
Ivey has generally embraced GOP priorities during her four years in office, including signing the nation’s most stringent abortion restrictions into law, banning nearly all abortions in the state, making performing an abortion a felony in nearly all cases. The 2019 law has been has been blocked by federal legislative courts and is still pending. Ivey has also barred transgender teens from joining sports teams that align with their gender identity.
Ivey’s announcement to run for reelections will likely discourage some gubernatorial hopefuls from running. Also, there has not been any Democrat that has announced a bid, and any Democratic contender would likely face an uphill climb in ousting Ivey in the ruby-red state