Montgomery, AL (WSFA) - Hundreds of Alabama Democrats were in Montgomery Saturday as the party officially kicked off the qualifying period for the June 2010 primary.
Even though the official qualifying period has just begun, a lengthy list of candidates across the state have already been gearing up for the upcoming primary season.
Several of those candidates were at that meeting at the RSA's Center for Commerce including Gubernatorial Candidates Congressman Artur Davis and Agriculture Commissioner Ron Sparks.
Some of the goals outlined by party leaders included filling the seat left vacant by Congressman Parker Griffith and taking back control of the state's executive branch.
Congressman Artur Davis said if the party didn't stand together in June, they wouldn't have a chance to take the win in November, while Commissioner Ron Sparks cleared up the speculation surrounding his run for Governor. He made it clear he was vying for the state's top office.
Republican State Candidates may begin qualifying March 2nd, and both parties close their qualifying periods April 2nd.
County election qualifying is open now.
Other news coming from the Democratic Party Saturday, Alabama Senator Kim Benefield called it quits after serving one term from her District 13 seat.
Benefield says she's retiring in order to be able to spend more time with her daughter, who lives in Georgia.