White Democrats New Minority in Ala. Legislature

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - The white Democrats who dominated the Alabama Legislature for 136 years will be the ultimate minority when the new Legislature assembles for the first time in Tuscaloosa for an orientation session.

The new Legislature consists of 88 Republicans, who are all white, 33 black Democrats, and 18 white Democrats.

There is also one white independent.

The modern-day Legislature had no Republicans until two were elected in 1962.

Their numbers have grown steadily since.

The first black legislators since Reconstruction were elected in 1970.

The Legislature's longest serving black member, Rep. Alvin Holmes of Montgomery, says the Legislature is becoming white Republicans and black Democrats.

Democratic Rep. Demetrius Newton of Birmingham says Democrats won't be divided by race. He says they must be united to be heard in their minority status.

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