State Rep.-elect Marilyn Lands (D-Madison) won the special election for House District 10 on Tuesday, making her the first net-gain Democratic pick-up in the Alabama Legislature since 2002.

1819 News surveyed local and state Republicans, political consultants and elected officials to find out what they believe occurred and what they see for the future.

One prominent GOP official said that national Democrats had nationalized this small campaign around abortion to scare Republicans in other states and help them fundraise off the issue.

One complaint was that the Republican nominee, Teddy Powell, took too much of a moderate approach and said that if Republicans were to win in purple districts, they must run as full-on Republicans, just as Lands ran as a full-on Democrat — even more so in a special election where turnout is smaller and only the parties' most loyal show up to vote.

However, the consultants did mention that this race would be a potential pick-up for Republicans in 2026 when the next gubernatorial election occurs, and more turnout will be expected.

Consultants told 1819 News that Democrats would use this nationally to sway federal elections. This has already begun, with a Twitter account linked to President Joe Biden's campaign team tweeting Tuesday night that this race sent a clear message to MAGA Republicans. They see this also being used in the upcoming battle between Republicans and Democrats in the second congressional district.

Some also discussed how this would embolden national Democratic money to flow into Alabama after they feel they have won a major victory. However, they pointed out that this is only a State House race. Lands lost this seat by seven points in the last election, and it does not represent Alabama as a whole. Another issue they raised was that House leadership was not doing enough to support the candidate and continued to utilize the same consultants even after continued losses in contested races.

SEE ALSO: CNN attempts to use abortion, IVF to boost HD10 Democrat Marilyn Lands in special election

One question raised was why no high-profile people were brought in for the Republican candidate and why there was no national media push. According to a few consultants, the writing was on the wall a few weeks before this was nationalized what the Democratic angle would be, and they questioned why the same was not done on the Republican side.

SEE ALSO: Marilyn Lands rolls out Doug Jones in last-minute campaign push

As for elected officials, their biggest concern is that with Democrats now emboldened, the cost of their races will likely increase tremendously. Several also mentioned how they feel that if Democrats try to make pushes in multiple areas, House Speaker Nathaniel Ledbetter (R-Rainsville) and his campaign arm, run by Steve Raby, will be unable to assist all of them. 1819 News reached out to Ledbetter and did not receive a response as of publishing.

Several house members also mentioned to 1819 News that House Majority Leader Scott Stadhagen (R-Hartselle) had been sidelined by Ledbetter and that he had been unable to fully function as the majority leader should, which, according to members, is to raise money and support candidates in elections. 1819 News reached out to Stadhagen, and he declined to comment.

All who spoke with 1819 News mentioned that something must change in how the state handles elections. Continuing to do the same thing repeatedly has proven not to work, and while many consultants have been able to sail to victory since the Republican takeover in 2010, the state has seen massive growth. To maintain the Republican supermajority, they must adapt to new technology and strategies.

To connect with the author of this story or to comment, email or on Twitter @BradleyCoxAL

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