By CAROLINE BECK, Alabama Daily News
Former State Rep. Barry Moore convincingly won the Republican nomination over Dothan businessman Jeff Coleman for Alabama’s 2nd Congressional District Tuesday night.
Moore told supporters this was a “David and Goliath race” in which he overcame the major cash advantage Coleman had throughout the campaign.
“When y’all see a garbage man from Battens Crossroads, Alabama going to Congress and standing up here talking to a bunch of people and TV cameras, that tells you we’re living in one of the greatest nations in the world,” Moore said. He owns a garbage hauling business in Coffee County.
Moore received 52,116 votes, or 60.5%, while Coleman got 34,102 votes, or 39.5%, according to unofficial results late Tuesday night.
Moore now goes on to face Democratic nominee Phyllis Harvey-Hall in the November general election.
Coleman campaign manager Dalton Dismukes told ADN that Coleman wishes “Mr. Moore well in November and is looking forward to the future continuing his service as a Wiregrass businessman.”
Moore raised $296,022 and contributed $190,000 in personal loans through June, while Coleman was able to raise $1.4 million and contributed $975,000 in personal loans.
“You’re looking at a campaign that didn’t have a general manager, didn’t have a fundraiser. We just had grassroots and a couple of campaign staffers and people who loved us and supported us,” Moore said.
But Moore was also the beneficiary of more than $700,000 in campaign spending from Washington-based political group Club for Growth, which ran a bevy of ads supporting Moore and attacking Coleman in the final weeks of the campaign.
Moore faced criticism for not voting in the 2016 primary election despite campaigning as one of the first elected officials in Alabama to support Donald Trump.
Coleman emphasized throughout his campaign his background as a businessman and his passion for growing jobs, while Moore leaned on his conservative voting record in the Alabama Legislature.
Coleman received the support from current U.S. Rep. Martha Roby and Alabama’s most senior statesman, U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby. Several mayors in the AL-2 district also endorsed Coleman.
Moore received his fair share of endorsements from major conservative groups like the House Freedom Fund, the Eagle Forum, the Alabama Republican Assembly, and the American Workers Coalition. Multiple out-of-state congressmen also endorsed Moore, including U.S. Reps. Jim Jordan, R-OH, and Andy Biggs, R-AZ.
Moore said he hasn’t thought much about next steps, with the 2nd District voting only once for a Democrat in the last 50 years, he sounded as if he was already prepared to go to work in D.C.
“Winning this race and running this campaign, that’s the easy part,” Moore told supporters. “Going to D.C. and facing the kinds of stuff we’ve got going on in this country, it’s a spiritual battle for the future of the nation. It’s not Democrats, it’s not race wars, it’s a spiritual battle for the future of our country and we’ve got to have men who are willing to bend a knee and look to heaven and stand up and fight, so that’s what we’re going to do.”