Bill Minor – Politics hold grim future in Mississippi

Reeves will waltz right into the state’s No. 2 job because Democrats put up no candidate. Therein lies a behind-the-scenes story of the Democratic gubernatorial race.

Democratic elder statesman William Winter urged DuPree to run for lieutenant governor, to give the Democrats a strong one-two ticket. As it turned out, Reeves alienated many Coast Republican s in his race against Hewes, providing a pool of voters who could easily switch to DuPree, also a South Mississippian.

Luckett aimed his campaign at beating Phil Bryant, the GOP gubernatorial nominee, on grounds Bryant as lieutenant governor, trivialized the need for a state pre-K education program as well as fully funding MAEP, both Luckett issues.

In the general election, Bryant can far outspend DuPree, especially if Barbour turns on the campaign money spigot of the Republican Governors’ Association and sends a gusher of cash. Plus, he can count on a fine-tuned state Republican political machine built by Barbour.

Meantime, there’s no sign Mississippi’s Democratic Party has shed the image Will Rogers defined 75 years ago, that he was not a member of an organized political party – he was a Democrat.

Clarion Ledger
8/25/11