MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — President Barack Obama isn’t on Alabama’s primary election ballot Tuesday, but the campaigns in both political parties make it seem like he is.
Republicans running for state offices have built their campaigns around who would fight Obama the hardest. Democratic candidates have talked about their support of Obama and have called for Alabama to expand its Medicaid program under the president’s federal health care law.
Retired University of Alabama political scientist William Stewart says candidates have brought the president into the primary election and made him a major issue.
Despite that, election experts are forecasting a lower-than-normal turnout Tuesday because Alabama doesn’t have a hot race for governor. Secretary of State Jim Bennett is predicting turnout at about 26 percent. The turnout four years ago was 32 percent.