Birmingham Mayor Woodfin seeks 2nd term, White House partnership
Birmingham’s youngest mayor in over a century is planning a re-election bid for 2021. In a January 21 press conference, Mayor Randall Woodfin confirmed his intention to seek a second term as the Magic City’s top executive. Woodfin’s campaign will officially launch this Saturday with a drive-in event at George Ward Park.
During the Thursday press briefing, Woodfin was asked by a reporter about rumors that he might be tapped to join the Biden administration. The mayor quickly dispelled the hearsay and made clear his commitment to the City of Birmingham as well as his intention to run for re-election. Woodfin also discussed his plans to leverage his relationships with Biden’s cabinet on Birmingham's behalf.
“As mayor, I look forward to an actual partnership with the [Biden] administration. There are many people I know who serve in cabinet positions in the actual White House. It’s actually a positive for our city, as well as our citizens, to be in a position to have genuine relationships with people who work in the White House,” remarked Woodfin.
Although the mayoral election is months away, two challengers have already entered the candidate pool with intentions to unseat Woodfin. Jefferson County Commissioner Lashunda Scales and Birmingham business owner Chris Woods have both made recent campaign launch announcements.
Scales, who served on the Birmingham City Council from 2009 to 2018, has clashed with Woodfin in the past over issues related to crime and city management. During her January 18 campaign announcement, she highlighted crime reduction, education, and business support as pillars of her campaign platform. “This is a selfless kind of job, you have to be willing to roll up your sleeves to be the change you want to see,” said Scales.
“If you give me an opportunity to serve as your mayor, not just the first woman mayor, but to serve as your mayor, you will have a seat at the table. That is what I can guarantee. You will also have my working ability,” she continued.
“So today I offer myself as a solution.”
Woods made his campaign announcement on January 13 at Birmingham’s Clubhouse on Highland. Although he has never held office, Woods is no stranger to Alabama politics. The 2021 race marks his third attempt to run the city. He lost to Woodfin in 2017 and also lost a bid for mayor in 1995. Woods has also been involved in past controversies involving the city. In 2016, Woods won a $2.6 million wrongful termination judgment against the City of Birmingham.
“I’m not running against anyone,” proclaimed Woods. “I’m running to take Birmingham to a level where it’s never been. I’m running to make Birmingham the all American city she once was. I want to transform this city so that people are coming here, not fleeing here...It’s time to join together and turn the tragic back to magic. Together, we can bring the magic back to the Magic City.”
Birmingham’s general election for mayor will take place on August 24, 2021.