Former Auburn Tigers coach Tommy Tuberville won the U.S. Senate seat in Alabama by defeating Sen. Doug Jones. He then conducted an interview but sparked criticism with some of his comments. He misidentified three government branches and "botched" some historical facts.
According to USA Today, Tuberville faced a question about whether the GOP will use a potential majority in the Senate to pass legislation. He responded by saying that he "doesn't care" if you are a Democrat or a Republican. He said that he'd been given the mandate to help people. However, Tuberville also incorrectly listed the three branches of the government, which are the legislative (the Senate and the House), the executive (the presidency) and the judicial (the Supreme Court).
"Our government wasn’t set up for one group to have all three branches of government — wasn’t set up that way," Tuberville said. "You know, the House, the Senate, and the executive." The former head coach continued and said that his dad fought in World War II to "free Europe from socialism" while discussing President-elect Joe Biden.
USA Today reports that Tuberville also incorrectly stated facts about the 2000 Presidential Election. The former head coach reportedly said that Al Gore was called the president-elect for 30 days during a Florida recount. "Neither Gore nor Republican nominee George W. Bush were considered the president-elect during that process, as neither were determined to have clearly won enough votes to secure the presidency," USA Today clarified.
A football coach for 21 years, Tuberville originally announced that he would run for Senate in 2019. He defeated Jeff Sessions in the GOP primary runoff and advanced to the general election. He defeated Jones, who originally won the seat in 2017, and will assume office in January.
When he defeated Jones, Tuberville gave a speech and discussed the future of the country. He said that he hopes the elections go the way the people want them to. He also made promises to residents of Alabama, whether they voted for him or Jones.
"It's important for me to close tonight by outlining three promises I'm going to make to you," Tuberville said. "I'll be guided by our shared values, conservative values, and I will always vote for the majority of people in the state of Alabama, not for a party, like Doug Jones did." Tuberville promised to "keep the people of Alabama's trust" by working for them, making the state proud, and thinking of his faith while on the Senate floor.