The Business Council of Alabama on Thursday endorsed U.S. Rep. Martha Roby in her 2016 reelection bid.
Roby, R-Montgomery, represents Alabama’s Second Congressional District that encompasses Southeast Alabama from two counties north of Montgomery to Dothan and the Wiregrass to west of Evergreen. The district includes major U.S. military bases that are worth hundreds of millions of dollars to Alabama’s economy – Maxwell-Gunter Air Force Base and the U.S. Army’s Fort Rucker.
Roby was endorsed at the headquarters of Coleman World Group in Midland City by company President and CEO Jeffrey F. Coleman, and BCA President and CEO William Canary. Coleman is the BCA’s First Vice Chairman and will assume the chairmanship of the BCA in 2017.
Coleman lauded Roby’s support for national defense and for her business support in Congress. One of two BCA exclusive partners in Alabama, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, said Roby is a free-enterprise champion.
“The reason we embrace her is because of her integrity, honesty, and her drive and her passion,” Canary said. “She has another strength that you don’t often see in elected officials and that’s courage, courage in an elected official to do what’s right even if it costs him or her the next election.
“I am proud to call Martha my representative in Congress, I am equally as proud to call her my friend,” Canary said.
Roby thanked Canary for the endorsement.
“Politics is about relationships,” she said. “It’s these relationships that allow for me to move forward with courage. Everyone knows the BCA is the state’s premier advocate for industry and business. It matters because they represent jobs. When the BCA goes to bat for its membership it also goes to bat for your jobs and the people who count on those jobs to support their families.”
Washington, D.C., Roby said, “too often gets in the way” of business progress with its policies and politics. “Bad policies make it difficult enough to create jobs but when politics get in the way, it’s a real challenge,” Roby said.
The last seven years have seen too many regulations from federal agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Labor Department, policies that have created a regulatory state, which acts like an unchecked fourth branch of government, she said.
“These are government agencies that turn out rule after rule and regulation after regulation that tie up employers in red tape,” she said. “It makes it difficult for businesses to be productive and to support jobs or create new jobs.”
Roby supported the recent federal highway bill that will improve the state’s vital local, state, and federal transportation systems.
“It’s a great bill and delivers much-needed road funding and it modernizes our transportation policy,” Roby said. “I’m committed to that bill and your tax dollars that are sent to Washington coming back to Alabama.”
She said some tried to defeat the bill by telling Republicans that it didn’t go far enough and by threatening members with a bad conservative grade on report cards.
“Some say they could have voted against that bill in the name of political purity,” Roby said. “I’ll let them explain that.”
Roby concluded and told Coleman World Group employees that she works for policies that affect their jobs whether it’s voting against military cuts or efforts to cut Medicare or supporting a farm bill that’s good for the state.
“I’m going to keep putting Alabama first,” Roby said.