By Steve Flowers, Guest Columnist
Recently, I wrote about Alfa’s influence in Alabama politics. In my August 8 column, I said, the Alabama Farmers Federation still controls the Legislature. They used to play in the Governor’s Race. However, they got burned badly by Bob Riley when they helped him get elected and the first thing he did was stab them in the back. However, they have slipped around this year and will not only own the Legislature, they will probably have a good friend in the Governor’s office.
The day before the Primary, Kay Ivey was put on Jimmy Ranes’ jet to fly around the state. Boarding with her was Beth Chapman, Alfa’s political consultant. The next night when she came off the platform after giving her appreciation speech, guess who was helping her off the stage and holding her arm so that she would not fall? Jimmy Parnell the Farmers Federation President.
Well, I get a note from Debbee Hancock, an Ivey campaign spokesperson, yes, that is right, it is spelled Debbee. She informed me that Beth Chapman was not actually on-board Jimmy Ranes’ plane that day when they flew Kay around the state. I politely told her that in watching the television footage, it looked to me like Beth was in a finite group of people walking beside Kay to the plane. Even Brent Buchanan, the Governor’s campaign manager, concurred with my assessment. He told me, “I was there with Beth and saw it on TV after. I totally see how you could have thought she was headed to the plane when the Governor exited that way.”
See complete story in the Pickens County Herald.