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Alabama Taking $3 Million Gamble On Early Primary

Montgomery, AL – Alabama took a $3 million gamble by moving up its presidential primary from the end of the primary season to Tuesday. Was it worth it?

Those who advocated the move say yes. Their evidence is the attention Alabama received from presidential candidates.

State Republican Party Chairman Mike Hubbard pointed out that Alabama had two Republican presidential candidates and former President Bill Clinton campaigning across the state on Saturday.

Joe Reed, vice chairman of the Alabama Democratic Party, also believes the state is now recognized by presidential candidates after years of being ignored.

All the major presidential candidates visited Alabama in the closing days of the primary except Democrat Hillary Clinton, who sent her husband, and Republican Mitt Romney, who had tentatively planned a Birmingham stop today but decided to focus on other states.

Voter interest also is evident, state election officials said citizens are registering in far greater numbers than in the past two presidential primaries.

Jess Brown, a political scientist at Athens State University, expects Alabama and many other states to review their primary dates after the presidential election is finished in November.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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