Sue Bell Cobb visits Atmore

Published 2:08 am Wednesday, May 10, 2006

By By Adam Prestridge
Sue Bell Cobb, who is vying for the chief justice seat of the state Supreme Court, visited Atmore Thursday evening to address fellow Democrats.
Cobb, a judge on the State Court of Criminal Appeals, was the guest speaker during the monthly meeting of the Escambia County Democratic Party. Cobb spoke about values and how she has encouraged voters across the state to elect her for her qualifications, tossing party labels aside.
"I'm here to say thank you," Cobb said as she opened her address.
Cobb was thanking the residents of Escambia County for their overwhelming support in 2000 when she was re-elected to the Court of Criminal Appeals, a statewide office she was voted into in 1994.
"I was the only one (Democrat) that survived," Cobb said.
In 1997, she was appointed by the Alabama Supreme Court to serve as the Alternate Chief Judge of the Court of the Judiciary.
Democrats have not fared well when it comes to electing appeals court judges. In 1994, Democrats held every seat on the state Supreme Court, Court of Civil Appeals, and Court of Criminal Appeals. Today, Judge Cobb is the lone Democrat left.
"The judges agree that we shouldn't have an all Republican court," Cobb said.
Reo Kirkland, Escambia County chair of the Democratic Party, had nothing but good things to say about Cobb.
"Judge Cobb is a well-rounded person," he said. "She has served our state and the Democratic Party with honor and dignity. If you want to see her again, she'll come back."
Cobb graduated from the University of Alabama. In 1981, she was appointed as District Court Judge of Conecuh County. She was the first female trial court judge in the county's history, and was re-elected twice. Her service took her across the state, trying cases in 40 of Alabama's 67 counties. According to a press release, no other candidate for Chief Justice has served as a trial judge or ever heard a single case in even one county in Alabama.
During her visit, Cobb also emphasized her religious values and her stand for better education in Alabama, putting children first. She went on to say that she has accomplished her judgeship by "living my faith, not using it."
Cobb, who is the Democratic nominee and faces no opposition in the June 6 primaries, will face either Chief Justice Drayton Nabers or Associate Justice Tom Parker in November.
Besides politics, Cobb shared several humorous stories of her upbringing in Conecuh County with party members, as well as her early years starting out in politics. She also shared many alarming facts regarding the state of Alabama including being 50th in resources for children, seventh for putting residents behind bars and having 85 percent of the mentally ill in the state not helped.
With 11 of the 19 court spots open and several key county officials up for election, including sheriffs, probate judges and circuit clerks, Cobb believes more voters will come out to the polls on June 6, which will in turn help those running in the primaries.

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