The special election to fill the vacancy left by former freshman legislator Ramona Blackledge in House District 88 is Tuesday, June 23rd.
Blackledge resigned from the Mississippi House of Representatives in January following the squabble over a handful of lawmakers collecting both their legislative compensation and state retirement through PERS.
Three candidates qualified for the HD 88 seat: Robin Robinson, Michael Walker and Jason Dykes. However, Dykes has since withdrawn his candidacy and has stated he will not take the office if elected, per the Mississippi Secretary of State’s office.
While candidates do not run under a party label in special elections, both Robinson and Walker have touted their conservative chops while campaigning.
According to her bio, Robinson is a graduate of Northeast Jones High School, Jones County Junior College, and the University of Southern Mississippi with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Accounting. After graduating from USM, Robinson began her 40-year career at Sanderson Farms. She made history in the company by being named the first female Cost Accountant, the first female Chief Accountant, Chief Internal Auditor, Manager of Human Resources, Manager of Organization Development, and the first female member of the company’s Executive Committee. Robinson is married to former Southern District Public Service Commissioner Sam Britton.
Walker was born and raised in Jones County, in the Sharon community. He has been serving as a Funeral Director for more than 20 years and is currently the Manager of Colonial Chapel Funeral Home out of Laurel and Ellisville. Walker is also a small business owner, running a small billboard company and parking lot striping business. He previously worked as Assistant Director of Environmental Services at Kessler Air Force Base‘s Medical Center in Biloxi and as an EMT. Walker is married with two children.
Whichever candidate wins 50% plus 1 vote will be declared the winner in the special election and will be sworn-in to fill the remaining three years of the current term in the Mississippi House representing HD 88.