Bryan Brinyark wins Republican nomination in House District 16

By: - October 24, 2023 9:33 pm
Bryan Brinyark

Bryan Brinyark, an attorney, won the Republican nomination for House District 16 on Tuesday. (Courtesy Bryan Brinyark)

Attorney Bryan Brinyark Tuesday won the Republican nomination for a Tuscaloosa-area House seat.

As of 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday night, Brinyark had 1,706 votes (52.75%) in unofficial returns, according to the Alabama Republican Party. Fayette County Commissioner Brad Cox had 1,528 votes (47.25%).

“We knew it was going to come down to the last little bit, and we are so proud to have to come out on the good end of this,” Brinyark said in a phone interview Tuesday night.

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He thanked the voters for coming out, especially in the Tuscaloosa area.

“We increased our turnout significantly, which is unheard of in a runoff election,” he said.

Brinyark will face Democratic nominee John Underwood in the general election for the seat in January.

House District 16 encompasses Fayette County in north central Alabama, as well as northern Tuscaloosa County and western Jefferson County.

Both Brinyark and Cox said stopping population loss in the district was a top priority. They seemed to agree that increasing the workforce by providing alternatives to colleges in the district for career training would keep more young talent at home.

Cox said that young people in the district need more access to tech career training. The commissioner said training young people in the district is key to keeping them there. Brinyark said that they need to create jobs to keep them home.

Both candidates also said they want to improve infrastructure in the district. Brinyark said that goods can’t get in or out of the districts if trucks don’t have accessible roads. He said that widening Highway 43 is crucial to bringing economic development to the district.

Cox cited his work as county commissioner on a five-year plan to repair roads across the county, as well as $2 million in purchases of  new equipment to support infrastructure projects, and the hiring of a new county engineer and administrator.

Cox and Brinyark also said parents should have more oversight over their children’s schooling.

Brinyark supports vouchers, saying he believed  they promote competition amongst schools. Cox said he supports giving parents more options to enroll their child in a school they are not zoned for.

South won House District 16 with 75% of the vote in 2014. He ran unopposed in 2018 and 2022.

The candidates raised nearly $200,000 for the race and spent almost 90% through it as of the latest campaign filings up to Monday.

Brinyark raised $103,055 through Oct. 20, and spent $91,260. About $65,900 came from 13 PACs, with Leadership PAC and ET PAC being the largest, totalling $11,950 each.

Cox raised $88,844 through Oct. 23, and spent $84,406. About $73,300 came from 17 PACs, with Alabama Voice of Teachers for Education being the largest at $15,000.

ALGOP Chairman John Wahl congratulated Brinyark in a statement Tuesday and said he “look[s] forward to working with him in the future as we mount a vigorous general election campaign.”

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Alander Rocha
Alander Rocha

Alander Rocha is a journalist based in Montgomery, and he reports on government, policy and healthcare. He previously worked for KFF Health News and the Red & Black, Georgia's student newspaper. He is a Tulane and Georgia alumnus with a two-year stint in the U.S. Peace Corps.

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