Déjà Vu! George Wallace Running for High State Office in Alabama

More than four decades ago George Corley Wallace vowed to hold the line on racial integration. In his January 1963 inaugural address as governor of Alabama, Wallace promised, “Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, and segregation forever.” But only a few months later Wallace was forced to make a symbolic “stand in the schoolhouse door” and then step aside as federal marshals escorted two black students into the registration hall at the University of Alabama.

Now George Wallace Jr. has announced plans to run for lieutenant governor of Alabama and no one in state politics believes that he will not one day run for governor. George Wallace Jr. is a Republican but, expectedly, he is openly courting black voters. In announcing his candidacy he was flanked by Johnny Ford, the mayor of Tuskegee who is black. Wallace also pledged to use surplus funds in the state treasury to provide health care for the poor.

George Wallace Jr. has extensive ties to the academic world. He is a graduate of Huntingdon College and did graduate work in political science at Auburn University. For five years he was director of financial aid at Troy State University in Montgomery and went on to serve for an additional five years as vice president for development and alumni affairs.

He served two terms as state treasurer and then joined the faculty of the Center for Government and Public Affairs at Auburn University. He now serves as a member of the Alabama Public Service Commission.

Copyright © 2006. The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education. All rights reserved.