Governor Kay Ivey and Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox Join Together in Disagree Better Initiative

Governor Ivey and Mayor Maddox Ran Against Each Other for Governor in 2018

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MONTGOMERY – Today, Governor Kay Ivey joined Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox to announce their participation in the National Governors Association (NGA)’s Disagree Better initiative. In Alabama’s 2018 General Election, Governor Ivey and Mayor Maddox ran against each other for governor. The governor and mayor have a tremendous partnership today and have come together on issues ranging from rebuilding the state’s infrastructure to supporting automotive manufacturing to bolstering students’ education.

“Alabamians are some of the best people in the world, and that is because we treat everyone with respect, even if that person votes differently than us or cheers for the rival team,” said Governor Ivey. “Even though Mayor Maddox and I once opposed each other on the ballot and maybe do not agree on every single issue out there, we do agree that the people of Alabama deserve our hardest work – and that means coming together to ensure our Sweet Home is the best place to live, work and raise a family for generations to come.”

“When it comes to solutions to serious issues, Alabamians are not looking for red or blue decisions. They just want the best decision for themselves, their children and their grandchildren,” said Mayor Maddox. “To do this, we must all work to disagree better. Even when it’s not easy, respecting each other’s perspectives, understanding unique life experiences and working to find the truth will ensure that what unites us is infinitely stronger than what divides us. Governor Ivey has achieved so much for our state and a great deal of her success is grounded in her ability to listen and build consensus.”

Governor Ivey and Mayor Maddox both remain proud of Alabamians for the example they set when it comes to disagreeing better. As the governor said during her 2024 state of the state address, “as an Alabamian, something I am most proud of, though, is that after the polls close, no matter who we voted for, we all still treat each other with respect.”

Disagree Better Initiative

Launched in July, Disagree Better is a yearlong initiative to help Americans learn the skills of healthy conflict. The effort aims to change the political behavior of both voters and elected officials, showing that the right kind of conflict often leads to better policy, can be more successful politically than negative campaigning and is the pathway to restoring trust in our political institutions.

National Governors Association

Founded in 1908, the National Governors Association (NGA) is the voice of the nation’s governors and one of the most respected public policy organizations in the country. The association’s members are the governors of the 55 states, territories and commonwealths. Members come to the association from across the political spectrum, but NGA itself is bipartisan.

Media Release/Office of Alabama Governor Kay Ivey

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