WTVA – MCDANIEL EXPECTED TO CLARIFY POLITICAL FUTURE MONDAY

State Senator Chris McDaniel says he will make an announcement early next week about his political future.

The Republican from Ellisville posted on Facebook Saturday night that he will make that announcement live on Facebook at 6 p.m. Monday.

“Next week should be interesting,” McDaniel said at the end of his Facebook post.

HATTIESBURG AMERICAN – Will Chris McDaniel take on Roger Wicker? March 1 deadline looms

A Mississippi state lawmaker who lost a bitter U.S. Senate race in 2014 says he will “get into a dark place and pray” about whether to run this year.

Republican Chris McDaniel has only a few days to decide: candidates’ filing deadline in Mississippi is March 1.

McDaniel never conceded his 2014 Republican primary loss to longtime Sen. Thad Cochran, who is chairman of the powerful Appropriations Committee. The race grabbed national attention after a McDaniel supporter entered a nursing home without permission and photographed Cochran’s wife, who was bedridden with dementia. Images of her appeared briefly online. McDaniel said he had no connection to the incident…

…No Democrat had entered the Senate race in Mississippi by Friday, state party chairman Bobby Moak said. The state has not had a Democrat in the U.S. Senate since John C. Stennis retired in 1989.

DAILY JOURNAL – Rumors in state House have Gunn replacing Cochran

Speculation in the Mississippi House is that Speaker Philip Gunn, R-Clinton, is in line to be appointed by Gov. Phil Bryant to replace U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran

Multiple members of the House – both Republican and Democrat – say there were members of the House positioning themselves to replace Gunn, who some say could resign before the current session is scheduled to end on April 1.

“It is no secret that Sen. Cochran has been in poor health for sometime,” said Rep. Steve Holland, D-Plantersville, who served as Cochran’s state political director in 1980. “My understanding from reliable sources is that he will take retirement sometime after March 1.

“Then the same reliable sources tell me Speaker Gunn is in line to be appointed to the Senate seat. Then, it will put the House in the position of having to choose another speaker.”

Have you checked your paycheck this month? More good news for Mississippi as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act! #checkyourcheck

Posted by Gregg Harper on Saturday, February 24, 2018

WDAM – Mississippi AG joins suit to block net neutrality rollback

The Mississippi Attorney General has joined a lawsuit against the Federal Communications Commission’s rollback of net neutrality. Attorney General Jim Hood’s office announced the filing of a petition to formally begin the lawsuit in a Friday press release.

Hood will join 22 other attorney generals in filing the petition for review in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit after the the FCC published the final rule repealing net neutrality in Friday’s Federal Register, according to the release.

WTOK – Mississippi casinos take less from gamblers in January

State Revenue Department figures released last week show gamblers lost $151 million statewide in January, down almost 9 percent from January 2017’s $166 million.

Receipts fell 7 percent to $92 million at the 12 coastal casinos.

The 16 river casinos posted winnings of $59 million, down almost 12 percent from $67 million in January 2017. That was the worst monthly total since May 2011, when floods forced some river casinos to close. Revenue has fallen at river casinos every year but one since peaking in 2006.

WLBT – Ethics Commission: City of Jackson violated state law by denying records to WLBT

A 3 On Your Side Investigation has led to a serious ruling against the city of Jackson: City employees broke state law by not releasing public documents.

The final order, issued by the Mississippi Ethics Commission on February 14, indicates the city violated the Mississippi Public Records Act by withholding some records originally requested more than eighteen months ago as part of an investigation into the spending of taxpayer dollars.

DAILY JOURNAL – Bryant to soon have all 12 appointees to IHL Board

Gov. Phil Bryant is on the verge of being able to do something no Mississippi governor in the modern era has done – make all 12 appointments to the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning.

Before the 2018 session’s scheduled conclusion on April 1, Bryant is slated to announce four nominees to the board that oversees Mississippi’s eight public universities to replace four members whose terms expire in May.

When those four Bryant appointees assume their posts, he will have all 12 appointees to the constitutionally created board that is considered one of the most influential in the state.

 

CLARION LEDGER – They Said It: ‘Knock You Naked Margaritas’

CLARION LEDGER – Mississippi Civil Rights: Icons honored, visit Jackson museum

MBJ – BILL CRAWFORD: Reeves’ BRIDGE Act would endow his governorship

Love him or hate him for it, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves stays true to his autocratic ways. He dropped his complex $1.1 billion “Building Roads, Improving Development, and Growing the Economy (BRIDGE) Act” on the Senate one day last week and passed it the next.

He also stuck in the bill provisions that would allow him expanded autocratic power as Mississippi’s next Governor. In addition to the imaginative funding it would provide, the bill would shift certain authorities from the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) to the Governor.

The big money in the bill, estimated at $800 million, comes mostly from diverting money from the state rainy day fund into a new “Economic Development and Bridge Repair Fund” under the control of the Governor, not MDOT. The Governor would get to choose which bridges to be repaired from a list prepared by the State Aid Engineer, but would have total discretion to choose projects that “support economic development.”

Notably, most of the money going into the fund would not be available to spend until the next Governor takes office.