Campaign Updates

Jeff Sessions tosses out support for Bradley Byrne, says he doesn’t know Dean Young

Posted on February 22nd, 2016

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By: John Sharp


U. S. Rep. Bradley Byrne can boast endorsements from conservative favorites such as the National Rifle Association, National Farmers Association and National Right to Life, as well as financial donations from a host of GOP lawmakers.

But it was comments from U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Mobile, that might be among the congressman’s biggest prizes ahead of the March 1 Republican Party primary. The race, which pits Byrne against challenger Dean Young for a second time, has shaped up as referendum on Byrne’s voting record.

Sessions, during an interview Friday on Sean Sullivan’s “Midday Mobile” broadcast on FM Talk 106.5, praised Byrne while saying that he didn’t know Young.

During the 1st Congressional District campaign, Young, an Orange Beach developer, has repeatedly characterized Byrne as a lukewarm conservative who’s nothing like the stalwart Sessions.

On Sullivan’s radio show, however, Sessions said, “I’m a big fan Bradley’s. We’re good friends and vote similarly on key issues. I think he’s a good congressman. It would be a mistake for anyone to stay I’ve endorsed Dean Young in this race.”

He said, “I think Bradley works hard every day, he knows our district exceedingly well, he’s smart and has good judgment. It’s wrong to suggest he somehow opposes all the things I believe in. He might not agree on everything I believe in … I’ve been known to make an error myself.”

Byrne’s team has touted the congressman as a strong conservative during a barrage of TV and radio spots. In response to Sessions’ remarks, Byrne stated: “Senator Sessions is a leading conservative not only in Alabama but around the country, and I am honored to have his support. From working to protect the jobs at the Austal shipyard to fighting to secure our borders, I’ve worked with Senator Sessions on a number of important priorities. I look forward to continuing to work alongside Senator Sessions as we stand up for our shared conservative values.”

Young, who has praised Sessions as a “national icon” for conservatives on immigration issues, accuses Byrne of siding with President Barack Obama “on providing amnesty to illegal aliens”

Young continued to make those comments late last week after Sessions’ radio appearance. “Bradley will lose this election because Bradley has voted to give Obama his illegal executive amnesty while Senator Sessions has worked hard to stop Obama,” Young said. “When I am congressman, I promise the people of south Alabama that I will work with Senator Sessions and stop illegal executive amnesty.”

Byrne spokesman Seth Morrow insisted that Young has “no idea what he’s talking about” when it comes to the congressman’s voting record.

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