Vance is sole Dem. qualifier in Ala. chief justice race - Montgomery Alabama news.

Vance is sole Dem. qualifier in Ala. chief justice race

Jefferson County Circuit Judge Robert Vance Jr. is the only Democrat to sign up to run for chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court. The Democratic Party's deadline to sign up was noon Wednesday.

"We are thrilled that Judge Vance has stepped forward and will be our candidate for Chief Justice this November," said Mark Kennedy, chairman of the Alabama Democratic Party. "Judge Vance is an incredibly well respected judge who will serve us proudly in the upcoming election and, most importantly, serve all the people of Alabama on the court."

The Democratic Party began seeking a new candidate after a party committee disqualified the original Democratic nominee, Pelham attorney Harry Lyon, on Friday.

Lyon said Wednesday that he plans to vote for Republican nominee Roy Moore as a matter of principle.

A write-in candidate for chief justice, Mobile attorney Melinda Lee Maddox, said Wednesday that she's dropping her campaign and supporting Vance.

Another Mobile attorney who had started and then dropped a write-in candidacy, Ginger Poynter, said she will also support Vance.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. WSFA 12 News contributed to this report. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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