Public Reacts To Amendment Passing


By Lisa Blackwell

Were voters strong armed into passing the constitutional amendment is Tuedays special election?

Wednesday officials and voters reacted to the passage of a measure that will help prop up the general fund budget for the next three years.

Governor Robert Bentley says he's pleased people overwhelmingly passed the amendment by a 2-1 margin.

However some people say they think voters didn't have a clear understanding of the issue.

Coming off a a win in the special election that he strongly supported, Governor Bentley told a crowd of members at a Alabama Utility Contractors Association meeting that he thinks voters passed the constitutional amendment because they trusted him to tell the truth.

Bentley's administration and groups in support of the referendum predicted dire consequences, like releasing thousands of prisoners and making major cuts to medicaid, if it didn't pass.

"I believe that they did believe us and the fact that we came out this summer and said we've already saved 600 million dollars and we showed the people of Alabama what we are already doing they couldn't say y'all need to save more money because we're already doing that," said Bentley.

But Senator Dick Brewbaker, (R) District 25, says, he thinks voters succumbed to scare tactics.

"I mean the ballot, when they went in to vote, it said to prevent the release of 17,000 prisoners and a whole list of horrible things, vote yes, and I think that's what people did they responded to it," said Brewbaker.

Art Long, a resident of Pike Road, says he thinks people voted yes because the amendment had bipartisan backing, but he was against it.

"I voted no because it's time for us to be responsible, government needs to be responsible, federal government on down and it's time to fix the problem lets not try to put a band-aid on the problem," said Long.

Bentley says he intends to pay back the Alabama Trust fund however he doesn't have a plan in place yet and says he's hoping the legislature will give him plenty of discretion to find the funding for that.