If you watch the show Brooklyn 99, you might be familiar with the phrase “going ‘full-Boyle.’” If you aren’t familiar, it’s when the character Charles Boyle dives head-first into a relationship and throws all norms out the window.
To me at least, it fully encapsulates the current Alabama GOP Senate primary race. Every candidate has jumped fully on the Trump bandwagon and are fighting over the reins without any regard for where they’re heading.
First, there’s former Senator and US Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Trump cucked him so hard it’s embarrassing, yet he grovels at the feet of the orange maniac asking for more. When Warhawk John Bolton finally decided to do something somewhat decent and spill some beans about Trump’s shakedown of Ukraine, Sessions chided him and crowed about how he didn’t write a book about his time in the Trump administration which leads me to believe Sessions knows some shit. But he loves Trump so it doesn’t matter.
Not to be outdone, Bradley Byrne used his dead brother and some overt racism to try and keep himself in the Trumper spotlight. The former state senator who ran for governor under the slogan “Don’t Back Down” has fully capitulated to the whims of the crowd and has debased himself in the process. Seriously, using your dead brother’s military status to try and prop up your struggling candidacy is a new low, even in the Trump era. That’s saying something.
Then there’s former Auburn head coach and ear model Tommy Tuberville, who’s angling for the “outsider” status that swept in Trump and his ilk in 2016. He’s basically a dumber version of Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan but without the baggage of ignoring sexual abuse claims. In a moment of defiance, Tuberville tried to stand up to Trump on his administration’s struggles in treating veterans’ health care. An admirable attempt at trying to protect veterans turned into a fiasco because the mob roared about Tuberville questioning the actions of Ol’ Tiny Hands’ administration. In a pathetic attempt to make amends, Tuberville apologized and tried to spin it as a positive for Trump. The same man who had no problem putting fingers in the air in Bryant-Denny suddenly turned into just another Trump muppet.
Thankfully, Roy Moore has avoided the spotlight in this race. I’m not even sure why he’s running unless it’s just to collect money for something else. He’ll likely pop up closer to the time of the primary vote, but his campaign is dead in the water. His hardcore supporters will vote for him, but when you’re so toxic that you lose a statewide election to a Democrat in Alabama of all places, your candidacy is pointless.
Recent polling shows Sessions is the clear front-runner but he has yet to garner enough support to avoid a run-off. The real question is who he’ll face as Byrne and Tuberville are neck-and-neck right now, so expect them to turn their sights on each other soon. There does exist some resentment towards Sessions because of his recusal in the Russia investigation and because he’s a career politician, but he’s a name brand so he’ll likely get the nomination eventually.
With it being a presidential election and Trump being on the ballot, whoever wins the GOP nomination will likely replace Doug Jones in the Senate. I personally think Jones has done a good job of advancing things while not rocking the boat all that much, but I don’t think it’ll be enough as Trump enjoys strong support here in Alabama. Expect a lot of straight-ticket voting for Republicans this November.