As the municipal election draws closer, Montgomery Mayor Steven Reed remains noncommittal on a possible congressional run.
Reed is leading the polls for the mayoral election on Tuesday, but many are speculating the incumbent mayor may have higher ambitions, depending on how Alabama's congressional maps shake out in federal court.
A three-judge panel in federal district court in January 2022 found Alabama's congressional map passed in 2021 likely unconstitutional and said a "remedial plan will need to include two districts in which Black voters either comprise a voting-age majority or something quite close to it." The U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the judges' opinion on appeal by the State of Alabama in June.
Earlier this week, attorneys for the state defended the new map passed by the legislature in July's special session before three federal judges. The judges have not released their opinion, but the proceedings did not look good for the state. If the new map is struck down, a federally appointed special master will redraw congressional lines, possibly allowing Reed a fighting chance in a congressional run.
Some in the state, including one of Reed's upcoming opponents, have insinuated that Reed had higher political aspirations than his current seat in Montgomery. If Reed did decide to run, it would be in 2024, before his mayoral term is completed.
When asked about a congressional run, Reed has consistently dodged the issue.
One critic of Reed's noncommittal attitude is Tabitha Isner, vice chair of the Alabama Democratic Party, who took to Twitter to voice her displeasure, saying she finds Reed's decision "problematic."
6 days until the Montgomery mayoral election. And Mayor Steven Reed still won't say whether he plans to run for Congress immediately after his reelection.— Tabitha Isner (@TabithaK) August 16, 2023
If you don't find this problematic, that's your choice. But I find it problematic. pic.twitter.com/lcaNc9afsE
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