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One week until Katie Britt becomes Alabama’s junior U.S. Senator

Election 2022 Alabama Senate
Butch Dill/AP
FR111446 AP
Republican U.S. Senate candidate Katie Britt speaks to supporters after securing the nomination during a runoff against Mo Brooks on Tuesday, June 21, 2022, in Montgomery, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

Alabama’s newest U.S. Senator will be sworn into office next week. Republican Katie Britt takes over for Richard Shelby. The outgoing lawmaker sat as vice-chairman of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee. West Virginia Democrat Robert Byrd led that same panel until his death in 2010. Professor Sam Workman teaches public policy at West Virginia University. He says Katie Britt worked for Shelby before taking office and that may help her navigate the Senate

“She’ll be able to hit the ground running with some of those things,” Workman observed. “But, you know, Richard Shelby was the vice chair of appropriations. And it’s not likely she’s going to be in that spot for the foreseeable future.

The Appropriations committee helps shape the federal budget. This enabled Shelby to funnel dollars to Alabama for projects including space exploration, the port of Mobile, and the Redstone Arsenal. Workman offered the prediction on how things will go after Shelby leaves.

“Resources kind of stop flowing until one of your Senators can work their way up and sort of begin, start delivering those benefits that relate to everything from economic development, infrastructure, all that sort of stuff.”

            APR produced an in-depth feature on how life may be in Alabama after Richard Shelby departs. Click below to hear it again.  

Pat Duggins is news director for Alabama Public Radio.
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