Gov. Kay Ivey on Thursday announced her decision to seek election as Governor in 2018, and will officially kickoff the campaign some time in the fall.
“Four months ago, I was sworn in as the fifty governor of the state of Alabama,” Ivey said in a statement. “There hasn’t been a more humbling moment in my life. That so many of you have supported and prayed for me and my team means the world — and it’s our highest honor to serve you.”
Ivey, the former lieutenant governor, became Alabama’s second female governor in April following form Gov. Robert Bentley‘s resignation amid growing scandal. She is currently completing the remainder of his term, which ends in 2018.
“I took over at one of that darkest times in our state’s memory. I’m proud to say we’ve steadied the ship,” Ivey explained. “I’m proud of the fact that over $1 billion in investment have been pledged to the state since I took office and thousands of new jobs have been created – those are families’ lives who have been forever changed.”
She continued, “Unemployment in Alabama has dropped to 4.5 percent – over a full percentage lower than at this time last year. More people in Alabama are working today than in a decade. Folks know that Alabama is now open for business. We’re going to keep the foot on the gas and get more jobs and more investment for our state.”
In recent months Ivey has been quietly preparing her candidacy. According to campaign finance reports, she’s raised over $1 million for her gubernatorial run.
She joins a crowded field of Republican challengers that include Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle, Jefferson County Commissioner David Carrington, evangelist Scott Dawson, Sen. Bill Hightower, Birmingham businessmanJosh Jones and former Morgan County Commissioner Stacy Lee George.
“I welcome Governor Ivey to the discussions we have been having over the last few months — conversations about jobs, infrastructure and education,” Battle said in a statement following Ivey’s announcement.
The gubernatorial election is scheduled for Nov. 6, 2018 with both party’s primaries scheduled for June 5, 2018.