Scenic photo of Dismals Canyon | Political leaders react to Rep. Jo Bonner's resignation

May 23, 2013
In The News

Political leaders react to Rep. Jo Bonner's resignation
By George Talbot | | May 23, 2013


MOBILE - Reactions poured in from across Alabama and beyond as news spread of U.S. Rep. Jo Bonner's decision to retire from Congress and take a job as vice chancellor of government relations and economic development for the University of Alabama System.

Gov. Robert Bentley commended the Mobile Republican for his work on behalf of the 1st Congressional District. Bentley will call a special election to fill the vacancy created by Bonner's resignation, which is effective Aug. 15. He said today that he had no timetable on the special election.
“Congressman Bonner has made a tremendous difference for the people of South Alabama," Bentley said in a statement today. "He’s worked hard on several major issues, including the ongoing recovery from the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill. He’s a devoted family man and a true friend. I’ve enjoyed working with him as Governor, and I wish him nothing but the best.”
U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Mobile, described Bonner as "one of the most talented and hard-working members of Congress."

“I have deeply valued the opinions and insights of ‘my’ Congressman," Sessions said. "He knows his district like the palm of his hand and personally knows an incredible number of constituents. He has served with wisdom, courage, and dedication, consistently supporting the highest Alabama values."

Former Gov. Bob Riley said Bonner will be missed in Congress.

"I’m sure this is good for Jo and his ability to stay with his family a little more, but I hate it sincerely for his district and the people of Alabama,” Riley said this afternoon.

Bonner's congressional colleagues praised his work on behalf of his constituents.

“Jo is one of the hardest working legislators and a close friend for whom I have a great deal of respect," said U.S. Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla. "Jo has been a friend not only to me, but to the many people whose lives he has touched across the State of Alabama and the entire Gulf Coast. I will miss his commonsense approach to legislating and his unquestionable integrity."

Members of Alabama's congressional delegation described Bonner as a dedicated public servant.

"Jo Bonner has been a good friend and trusted colleague for many years," said U.S. Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Vestavia Hills. "While this is a tremendous loss to our delegation, I have no doubt that he will continue to serve the state with distinction in his new role."

U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Birmingham, said she was sorry to see Bonner depart Congress.

"Jo has always put the interests of his constituents ahead of partisan politics and I will miss the bipartisan town hall meetings we held together in Clarke County," said Sewell. "Since his election in November 2002, Jo has left an indelible mark on Alabama’s First Congressional District and this nation.”

"Jo Bonner is an esteemed colleague and friend," said U.S. Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Haleyville. "It has been a pleasure working with him over the years and his presence in Washington will be greatly missed. I wish Jo the very best and know he'll continue his commitment to Alabamians in his next endeavor." 

U.S. Rep. Martha Roby, R-Montgomery, described Bonner as a friend and mentor.

 “I have deeply appreciated and valued his discerning, deliberate and consistent leadership from day one," Roby said. "Though I will miss him as a member of Alabama’s congressional delegation, I’m proud and happy for Jo and his family as they begin this new chapter of their lives."

U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Huntsville, said he was honored to serve with Bonner in the House.

“The State of Alabama and Congress were made better by his work," Brooks said. "Jo’s retirement is Congress’ loss and the University of Alabama’s gain."

Former U.S. Rep. Artur Davis described Bonner as "the single best public servant I worked with during my time in politics."

"He is a statesman and there are so few of those left in politics," Davis said. "Alabama should appreciate what he meant to the state's image and how well regarded he is in the House."


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