12 Most Liberal Cities in Alabama
If you were to think of anything deep and red in Alabama, it wouldn’t be far from the truth, having known for the “eye of the beholder” when it comes to politics. Its rich history, with its many battles and figures, often spurs people into thinking of Alabama as a deeply red state.
Politics isn’t black and white. They vary drastically depending on who you ask and from where you survey them. That being said, here are the 12 most liberal cities in Alabama. A range of factors, including higher education presence, industry variety, racial and cultural diversity, and presidential elections, contribute to the unique political climates in these urban centers.
For the most liberal cities in Georgia instead, read this post.
First on our list of the most blue cities in Alabama is Decatur. Often hailed as the “River City,” Decatur stands out for its progressive approach to economic development and cultural inclusivity. The city is home to diverse industries ranging from manufacturing to technology. The presence of industries requiring high technical skills and offering competitive wages has attracted a diverse workforce.
This diversity has resulted in a rich cultural mosaic that’s reflected in the city’s various festivals and community events, a sign of a community that embraces different ideas and cultures, hallmarks of a liberal city. Decatur is a fantastic place to settle for black families. Moreover, Decatur’s investment in its education sector, with consistently high-rated schools, suggests progress as a priority and an earnest willingness to prepare the Decatur people for the future, characteristic of liberal values.
Selma is also a city rich in history, particularly in terms of civil rights. The movement for change in civil rights is still alive in Selma. In recent years, there have been rumblings of progressivism among local activists and community leaders. These rumblings and living flames reinforce the long-standing practice of civic activism and the history of grassroots organizing and advocacy for equality and justice. With its natural history and strong commitment to these causes, it’s no surprise that Selma is one of the 12 most liberal cities in Alabama.
The tenth city on our list is also filled with such special characteristics, including a youthful and progressive future. Tuscaloosa boasts an excellent university in the University of Alabama, and it was more than just neighbors that created these different ideas and cultures from around the world represented there. Universities, in general, tend to be forums for liberal tendencies because they let students think critically and look at things objectively. Lawmakers as well are not reluctant to introduce policies that seem like good ideas but sometimes could backfire.
They have championed causes such as environmental sustainability, social justice, and access to quality education for all, further strengthening Tuscaloosa’s position as a liberal stronghold in Alabama. Tuscaloosa is also home to the Alabama Museum of Natural History.
Florence is number nine on our list of the most liberal cities in Alabama. With its own full-time professional orchestra, galleries of the art of all kinds, and historical, scenic attractions in so many neighborhoods that draw a talented mix of people.
Its historic architecture and its commitment to preserving this architectural heritage while also creating space for contemporary artistic expression indicate the city’s liberal leanings. It’s not unusual, then, if cities with strong arts scenes are generally more liberal—because these places encourage the free exploration of ideas, along with tolerance and equality among their inhabitants. Add this progressive outlook to the lovable local culture, and Kenzo Park, Florence’s famous artwork in a public venue located on Piazza Santa Croce, is set for yet another hit.
Next is Huntsville, later recognized as “Rocket City” for its strong ties to the nation’s space missions. As a center of technology and engineering, Huntsville is known for highly educated professionals, a trend that often leans liberal.
The large number of people migrating to Huntsville over recent years illustrates the city’s great prosperity in recent times. This massive influx brings with it innovation and a variety of cultures. It also has brought forward more liberal political elements within the Huntsville. The government here is proactive in implementing policy measures that attract companies that specialize in technology-oriented innovation and growth, such as Intel and Lockheed Martin. These companies continue to create excellent jobs for talented Alabamians. Democrats love living in Huntsville.
Home to Auburn University, the city of Auburn finds itself at number seven on our list and is a great home for Democrats. The university atmosphere is youthful and dynamic, and as is sometimes the case in college towns, a diversified student body enhances the liberal political climate. Auburn University draws students from all corners of the globe. Thus it fosters a multicultural environment that naturally encourages liberal thought, thus fostering progressive values. Beyond the university, Auburn’s commitment to green spaces, high-quality public schools, and community outreach programs demonstrate a progressive attitude toward community development.
In the middle of our list, we come to Montgomery, the capital city of Alabama, and the second largest city in the state. One thing that makes this a more liberal city is its historic and forward-moving neighborhood. The city was an important site for the Civil Rights Movement, and it was also the first capital of the Confederacy.
This distribution of historical significance has forged Montgomery into a city that prizes its history but pushes for progressive change. From reviving its downtown to adopting inclusive policies, Montgomery shows how a city can honor the past while favoring inclusion in the future. Montgomery is located in the center of Alabama hand the majority of residents here tend to vote for the Democrat leader.
Coming in at number five is Mobile, Alabama’s oldest city, and located in Mobile County. Mobile merits special attention for its complex combination of historical and cultural diversity. The city is mainly known as the arts stronghold of Alabama, yet it has welcomed industries from many eras, including modern manufacturers to commercialized historic districts. Tradition and new are not distanced with regard to Mobile’s history; they merge in this city to form a liberal ethos that respects change while cherishing tradition. Mobile’s emphasis on arts, culture, and a diverse population has shaped it into a city that welcomes different perspectives and champions liberal causes.
Not exactly a place one automatically thinks of when liberalism is suggested in Alabama, Dothan has seen significant economic change over the past few decades. Dependent on farming for its economy prior to that time period, Dothan has grown and diversified in the healthcare, retail, and finance/insurance industries.
Located in the South of Alabama, the diverse economy of Dothan has attracted a variety of residents and fostered a community that leans towards Democrats. Furthermore, Dothan’s commitment to cultural festivals and community engagement initiatives demonstrates a city committed to inclusivity, furthering its position among the most liberal cities in Alabama.
Also based in the South of Alabama is Fairhope, a city with a utopian history. Fairhope was originally established as a single-tax colony and embodies many of the principles felt to be inherent in the idea of communal living—principles that are where many liberal viewpoints fall on issue divisions.
While it has not always been so clear just how politically and/or socially liberal Fairhope is, the city itself still maintains its tradition of progressive thinking with a focus on sustainability, arts and culture, and community welfare today. It is this commitment based on forward-looking values and practices which makes Fairhope what some consider one of the most political, or at least conventionally liberal cities in Alabama. The city has a town like feel, and is very welcoming to new people.
Birmingham, Alabama’s largest city, has evolved into a progressive transformation with the city positioned as one of the leading liberal cities in the state of Alabama. Its social justice promotes overview gives it a history; Birmingham subsequently developed into an arts and culture hub over the past few years. Based in Jefferson County, Birmingham’s emphasis on education, equality, and multicultural understanding is a testament to its progressive attitudes. The city’s diverse demographics and variety of industries have led to a broad mix of perspectives, often a breeding ground for more liberal political views.
Finally, the title of the most liberal city in Alabama goes to Gadsden. Although smaller than other cities on the list, Gadsden carries its liberal weight proudly when putting ideals of progressive values into action. The city has resisted conservative politics and uplifted the poor through social justice programs, economic assistance to lower-income residents, investment in educational opportunities, and improvement of infrastructure. Gadsden’s local government has shown a commitment to progressive policy, and community groups are active in causes related to social justice and equality. This liberal ethos, combined with its small-town charm, gives Gadsden a unique spot in the landscape of Alabama’s political spectrum. The vast majority of residents here identify as liberals.
These 12 most liberal cities in Alabama demonstrate how diversity, education, and a commitment to social justice can succeed even where traditionally conservative attitudes dominate. Their stories show us that the state of Alabama is also one of the contrasts, where progressive ideas are held alongside conservative traditions, and these philosophies actually contribute to its rich tapestry of culture and identity.
We’ve also written a similar article on the most liberal cities in Wisconsin.