Within the last 48 hours, it has become rather evident that Haley Barbour will be tapping Congressman Roger Wicker as Senator Trent Lott’s interim replacement. Press conferences are scheduled in Jackson and Gulfport on Monday to make the final announcement of Governor Barbour’s choice for the interim post.

On Friday, shortly after the press conference was announced, Congressman Chip Pickering released a statement to functionally remove his name from consideration. Other serious names that have been floating through the rumor mill are State Treasurer Tate Reeves, who was just re-elected to his second term, and Gulfport Mayor Brent Warr.

Assuming Wicker is the pick, there will be a scramble to qualify for his seat as the qualification deadline looms near. One of the odds-on favorites to run for a Wicker vacated seat would be Mayor Greg Davis of Southhaven. He has outstanding conservative credentials and can deliver votes in a very politically active area of the state. There would likely be a special election announced within 90 days that would feature an open primary format with a runoff, if necessary. Then there would be a Democratic and Republican primary for the regularly scheduled November 2008 Congressional election.