Candidates Find Court Races Appealing
Welch's judicial circuit takes in Conecuh and Monroe counties and given the Democratic leaning nature of that constituency, Welch probably had little choice to run as a Democrat. And now that he is running statewide he finds it expedient to run under the Republican banner.
Welch will not have the primary to himself, however. Clay Crenshaw and Beth Kellum have already filed and Alva Lambert is still weighing the race. Indeed, Crenshaw welcomed Welch to the race by publicly blasting Welch's handling of a 1996 capital murder trial. With a fractured primary field with no well-known frontrunner, this GOP primary looks to be headed to a runoff.
Democrats also found a candidate to run for Criminal Appeals Court this week. District Judge Aubrey Ford announced yesterday that he'd run for Place 1 against incumbent Republican Greg Shaw. Ford ran for the Court in 2000 also, but couldn't overcome the Bush/Moore landslide at the top of the ticket. But Ford has a compelling resume and hopes that 2006 will be a more hospitable election environment for Democrats.
Democrats are also touting the imminent entrance of another candidate for the Criminal Appeals Court. Presumably this new candidate would run for Place 2 against Kelli Wise as Democrat Deborah Bell Paseur seems to have staked out the primary for the open Place 3 seat.