- Associated Press - Thursday, June 29, 2017

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox announced Thursday that he is considering a run for governor in 2018.

Maddox, who is in his fourth term as mayor, announced on social media that he is forming a committee to explore a possible gubernatorial run.

In his statement, Maddox said that Alabamians “deserves better” than what they have been getting in state politics. He noted a wave of recent scandals in state politics and that the state’s past governor, chief justice and House speaker have resigned, or been removed, from office under ethical clouds.

“I have heard the voices of people from across Alabama calling for a new beginning in Montgomery. A new covenant between the people of Alabama and the people serving us. We must create a new covenant together. We owe it to ourselves. We owe it to our children. We owe it to the future,” Maddox wrote.

Maddox has been Tuscaloosa’s mayor since 2005. He previously served as personnel director for Tuscaloosa city schools and director for the Alabama Education Association.

Maddox is a Democrat. He said some people have urged him to switch to the GOP for political convenience, but he said that would be dishonest. The state has not elected a Democrat as governor since 1998.

The field for the 2018 gubernatorial race is beginning to take shape a year out from the primaries.

Former Alabama Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb is running on the Democratic side. The Republican field includes Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle. Public Service Commission President Twinkle Andress Cavanuagh has filed paperwork to create a gubernatorial campaign committee.

Republican Gov. Kay Ivey has not announced if she will run for the office in 2018.

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