- Associated Press - Monday, April 28, 2014

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - An organization formed by former Supreme Court Justice Mark Kennedy after he stepped down as state Democratic Party chairman has gone dormant, but another group is developing.

Kennedy resigned as party chairman and Bradley Davidson stepped down as party executive director a year ago to start the Alabama Democratic Majority. Now they’ve turned their attention to a group called Empower Alabama.

“Our goal is to make Alabama more progressive and making officials more responsive to more people,” Davidson told The Anniston Star (http://bit.ly/1rwS04v ).

Empower Alabama was founded in 2006 by former Democratic U.S. Sen. Donald Stewart of Anniston, but Stewart said it had been inactive for a couple of years. Davidson filed paperwork in January to reorganize it.

The group’s goals include informing voters and getting people registered to vote regardless of party. “When we register people to vote, we don’t ask them how they’re going to vote,” Kennedy said.

Kennedy and Davidson left the state Democratic Party after disagreements with others in the party leadership and with the party struggling to pay about $500,000 in debts that had built up over several years.

Davidson said he and Kennedy are the only remaining board members of the Alabama Democratic Majority, which has little money and no staff. He said he still runs the group’s website. But he and Kennedy have “shifted our focus to become more expansive and nonpartisan.”

Stewart is listed as a board member of Empower Alabama, but he said he’s backed out of the group, largely because his son, Taylor Stewart, is running as a Democrat for the Senate seat held by Republican Del Marsh of Anniston.

Some of the staff of Empower Alabama includes former staffers for Organizing for America, part of President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign, and Empower Alabama is using 270 Strategies, a Washington political consulting group that has worked on Democratic campaigns since 2012.

Davidson said the group hired 270 Strategies to find large pockets of unregistered voters in groups that are underrepresented at the polls, including Hispanics, young people and women.

“We do want to expand the electoral landscape, and if we do, we will make it more competitive,” he told the newspaper.

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Information from: The Anniston Star, http://www.annistonstar.com/

Copyright © 2016 The Washington Times, LLC.

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