Alabama Republican Chairman re-elected - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Alabama Republican Chairman re-elected

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The Alabama Republican Party has re-elected its party chairman even without support from the state's highest office. Bill Armistead defeated challenger Matt Fridy Saturday in Birmingham.

Even though Governor Bentley supported Matt Fridy's candidacy, he did congratulate Armistead on his victory and pledged to continue working with him moving forward.

Bill Armistead says he's ready to lead the Alabama GOP into the 2014 elections. "We're already planning. We're recruiting candidates. We have a game plan, I'm ready to work on that." And he also says, Republicans have to unite. The State Republican Executive Committee re-elected the party chairman Saturday even though Governor Robert Bentley and some other party leaders supported his opponent Matt Fridy.

Armistead says "I'm asking my opponent Matt Fridy, the governor, the lieutenant governor and speaker to all of come together and work toward winning the election of 2014."

Senator Scott Beason says Armistead was re-elected by a pretty sizable margin and supports the decision, especially after progress was made during the 2012 election. "I think it's because a lot of the work he did in a lot of rural areas. The party has focused on statewide races and a couple years we focused on legislative races and they really tried this time to focus all the way down to the county level." Armistead says republicans won in some counties for the first time, last year.

And he has new goals to generate more success next year. Armistead says I'm already working toward really building a strong Black Republican organization in Alabama and a Hispanic organization. For a long time, we've had a black republican organization called the Minority GOP and it's strong, but we can make it stronger. We can recruit candidates, African American Republican candidates and Hispanic candidates to run."

Senator Beason says "What I think it takes to be united as a party is to put some petty differences aside. I have people I don't agree with all the time, but we have to come together on the same team and push for trying to increase Republican majority."

Armistead says he'll be meeting with Governor Bentley this week.

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