The Sun Herald, 2/28/9

Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant has endorsed Ocean Springs mayoral candidate Scott Walker in a move Walker welcomes, but his opponents say state officials shouldn’t be involved in local elections.

Walker, a Republican and former staffer for former U.S. Sen. Trent Lott and current U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, said he has campaigned for Bryant in the past and he was pleased Bryant was lending his support. Bryant appeared at a recent fundraiser for Walker and Walker said he believes support from Jackson can only help the area.

“Those people can directly impact and directly help the city of Ocean Springs,” Walker said. “I look at that as very much a positive.”

Mick Bullock, a spokesman for Bryant, said in a statement the lieutenant governor was honored to give the endorsement, but he also said there was nothing more to say about the issue and declined an interview.

“Lt. Gov. Bryant is supporting Scott Walker because of their friendship, and most importantly because he believes Scott would do an excellent job as mayor of Ocean Springs,” Bullock said in a statement. “From time to time, Lt. Gov. Bryant has chosen to endorse candidates for office he feels strongly about, and this is one of those occasions.”