Dale Strong and Casey Wardynski advance to runoff in Alabama’s 5th District Republican primary

Dale Strong and Casey Wardynski advanced to a June 21, 2022, runoff from the May 24 Republican Party primary in Alabama’s 5th Congressional District. Six candidates ran in the Republican primary. Republican Rep. Mo Brooks represented this district for more than a decade. In 2022, he ran for the U.S. Senate rather than seeking re-election, creating an open seat. Brooks did not make an endorsement in this race.

According to the primary election results, Strong earned 45% of the vote, followed by Wardynski with 23%, John Roberts with 14%, and Paul Sanford with 11%. In Alabama, a candidate must receive over 50% of the vote to advance directly to the general election.

Strong served as the chairman of the Madison County Commission in 2022 and has held this position since 2012. He was a volunteer firefighter and emergency medical technician (EMT) in the Monrovia area. Strong described himself as “a pro-life Christian who will stand up for the unborn and fight for our Christian values.” He said, “These values are under attack today by those who want to control what we read on social media and what our children are taught in school.” Strong was the first candidate to enter the primary race and held the lead in polling and fundraising in the weeks before the election.

Wardynski served as the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs under former President Donald Trump (R) from 2019 to 2020. He also served as the superintendent of Huntsville city schools from 2011 to 2016. Wardynski described himself as “a proud, pro-Trump conservative Republican who answered the call when President Trump asked me to be his Assistant Secretary of the Army” and said, “I am committed to advancing the America First Agenda. I am not afraid to take on The Swamp and the special interests who fought President Trump at every turn. I will fight Joe Biden when he tries to roll back the progress created under President Trump.”

Before the primary, the Cook Political Report, Sabato’s Crystal Ball, and Inside Elections all rated Alabama’s 5th Congressional District as a solid/safe Republican seat.