Mississippi House has always been a ‘no party’ body

For the first time in 137 years there are more members of the Mississippi House (long considered the “Peoples” house) with R behind their names than those with Ds. That, however, may be just a cosmetic difference in the state’s legislative history rather than an ideological one. I’ll tell why.

My legislative perspective covered six decades as a journalist. Only in recent years has nomenclature – the R or D designating Republican or Democrat – taken on significance in the public mind.

For most of those years, I would classify the House as a no-party legislative body. Although its 122 members (140 members until 1970) were elected in Democratic primaries, I wouldn’t classify more than a dozen or so as genuine Democrats who held any loyalty to the national party of Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Clarion Ledger
1/12/12