Filibuster Fight Makes Its Way Into Alabama Senate Race

Strange campaign accuses Brooks of ‘flip-flopping’

Alabama Rep. Mo Brooks is rejecting charges of flip-flopping from Senate rival Luther Strange’s campaign. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Alabama Rep. Mo Brooks is rejecting charges of flip-flopping from Senate rival Luther Strange’s campaign. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Posted July 20, 2017 at 2:34pm

When Rep. Mo Brooks released the first ad of his Alabama Senate campaign, he made a splash by threatening to filibuster — by reading from the King James Bible — any spending bill that doesn’t fund President Donald Trump’s border wall. 

On Wednesday, he took to the House floor to blast the Senate’s legislative filibuster, calling it a “murder weapon” that’s “killing” Trump’s agenda. That’s not a new position for Brooks.

But the campaign of one of Brooks’ opponents, appointed Sen. Luther Strange, seized on his comments, splicing together the congressman’s ad featuring his threat to use the filibuster with audio of a conversation he had with Sean Hannity about wanting to do away with the procedure.

[Alabama GOP Senate Candidates Fight Over Loyalty to Trump]

“Career Politician Mo Brooks,” reads the captioning on the digital ad from the Strange campaign. “Another day. Another flip-flop.”

Brooks said there’s no inconsistency between his remarks. They’d only be confusing, he said Thursday, to “people who are naive and not very intelligent on the Senate rules issues.”

“If we get rid of the filibuster rule, then the Republican majority can fund the wall,” Brooks said. “If we don’t get rid of it, I’m going to fight fire with fire and use it to force funding for the border wall.”

In April, Strange, who was appointed to the seat in February, joined 60 other senators in signing a letter urging Senate leadership to preserve the 60-vote threshold for legislation.

Brooks alluded to that letter on the House floor Wednesday, saying, “Remarkably, even an Alabama senator supports killing President Trump’s agenda.”

Brooks, Strange and seven other Republicans are running in the special election GOP primary for the remaining term of former Sen. Jeff Sessions, now the U.S. attorney general. The primary election is Aug. 15, with a run-off scheduled for Sept. 26 if no candidate clears 50 percent of the vote.