County presence on state ballot

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 28, 2002

When Alabama voters go to the polls next week, two of Shelby County’s own will be right on the top of the Republican ballot.

Bill Armistead of Columbiana is a candidate for Alabama lieutenant governor, and Beth Chapman of North Shelby is a candidate for State Auditor.

And according to both, campaigning for the Republican primary is going well.

&uot;It’s going really well,&uot; Armistead said, citing the numerous endorsements he has received from business groups and news organizations, including four major daily newspapers in the state.

Chapman said her campaign was progressing as well.

&uot;I’ve been overwehelmed at the response I have received,&uot; she said. &uot;There’s always the obvious response of friends and family, but there is also the support of virtually every elected official in Shelby County.&uot;

Chapman has seen this support in correspondence as well as her meetings with various groups around the state.

&uot;I feel honored at the number of people who have made a financial contribution to my campaign. It shows a real investment and a genuine belief in me as a candidate.

&uot;And those contributions range from senior citizens on a fixed income in Brantley, Ala., to average Alabamians to some of the wealthiest people in the state. And I’m glad to have the support of all of them.

&uot;My supporters are an excellent cross-section of grassroots Alabama.

The one thing they all have in common is they want good government and they believe I will give them that,&uot; Chapman said.

Chapman, who serves as chairman of the Shelby County Republican Party, has worked for numerous Republican officials in the past including former Gov. Fob James, Lt. Gov. Steve Windom and numerous judges.

&uot;All of my life, I have wanted to be in public service, and I have indirectly done that by working with other Republican political officials,&uot; Chapman said. &uot;I have helped elect a lot of outstanding Republicans.

&uot;But at the age of 40, I feel it is my time to stop standing on the sidelines. I find that all the average citizen wants is for a person to have honesty and integrity and there is no question in my mind that I can give them that.&uot;

Armistead, who has served as Shelby County’s Senator for District 14, said he has never wavered from his decision to run for Alabama lieutenant governor.

&uot;I’ve never had one moment of regret,&uot; he said. &uot;I’m confident that I’m doing exactly what I need to be doing at this time.&uot;

He said he had &uot;mixed emotions&uot; about giving up his Senate seat, because he loves &uot;the people of Shelby County.&uot;

He said, however, he felt he could represent the county better as lieutenant governor.

&uot;I believe I can do more for Shelby County as Alabama’s lieutenant governor,&uot; Armistead said.

The offices of lieutenant governor and auditor are created in Alabama’s Constitution.

Both Chapman and Armistead face opposition in the Republican primary.

Chapman faces Pat Duncan, Meredith Mayes and Jim Zeigler.

Armistead faces Cheryl Ann Bahakel