Before Bradley Byrne’s term as Alabama’s District 1 congressional representative, there had never been a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Baldwin County, he said.
“I think it would be a good idea for us to have for the first time a U.S. senator from Baldwin County,” Byrne said. “What do you think?”
Byrne, the four-term representative for District 1, spoke at the annual Stakeholders Meeting for the Gulf United Metro Business Organization (GUMBO) at the Orange Beach Event Center on Jan. 20. He is running for the Senate seat currently held by Doug Jones, D-Birmingham, who was elected to fill out the term of Jeff Sessions, R-Mobile, who gave up his seat to become Donald Trump’s attorney general.
In the March 3 primary, Byrne will face off against Sessions, former Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville and former Chief Justice Roy Moore. Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill dropped out of the race in December. Jones is unopposed on the Democratic ticket.
Byrne praised his own work in Congress saying much was achieved with President Trump before Democrats won control of the House in 2018 and began investigating the president.
“My first five years in Congress I really felt like we were doing good stuff and getting things done,” he said. “Even when the president was Barack Obama, someone with whom I had a lot of disagreements, I felt like we were getting some things done. And certainly, the first two years of President Trump’s term we got an awful lot done.”
Byrne cited tax reform, relaxing of regulations on business and industry, improvements in national defense and Trump’s appointment of conservative judges to federal courts.
“It was a thrill to be there,” Byrne said.
That changed drastically, Byrne believes, once the Democrats gained control of the House and Nancy Pelosi became speaker.
“She started from the very beginning saying, ‘We are going to investigate the president,’” Byrne recalled. “She didn’t say ‘impeach,’ she said ‘investigate.’ But it was clearly about impeachment from the very get-go. Once you get to that point all the political oxygen gets sucked out of the room. So last year the United States House of Representatives issued more subpoenas than we passed bills that became law.”
Byrne said he could get more done in Washington as a senator and said he would try to guide the nation back to the first principles touted by the Founding Fathers.
“There are people in this country that want you to believe this is an evil country that we were evil from our very beginning,” Byrne said. “That’s not true. That sort of thinking divides and we’ve got to go back to where we came from.”
Big issues and problems on the horizon that are not receiving needed attention because of bipartisanship, Byrne said, include healthcare, border security and getting an infrastructure bill passed to help with roads and bridges.
“We need to have people up there that understand what that job means and that is to serve the people,” Byrne said. “I want to be your senator.”
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