Gill acknowledges the uphill battle he faces in his bid to be the next District 3 Congressman against a better organized and better funded Republican candidate in Harper. But, the Pickens Alderman also remains optimistic that recent events could catapult him to the office.
“Following the runoff, I usually heard one tagline, that’s that Harper can easily expect to defeat Joel Gill,” he joked during a recent interview over a catfish lunch at a Flora restaurant during a campaign swing.
Gill says that he is encouraged by recent Democrat gains such as the election of Travis Childers in the First Congressional District, a seat once held by Senator Roger Wicker and once deemed safe for Republicans. Gill characterizes the Republican idea that District 3 is an easy win for the GOP as “awfully arrogant” and points to what he believes is skewed polling data.
“Most of the polling that people were using actually revolved around presidential races in the past, and frankly there haven’t been very many good Democratic candidates, especially to Mississippians,” Gill said. “When you couple that with statewide races, it looks bad. But, many of your local races have a huge number of Democrats, and the Legislature is predominantly Democrat. That’s not counted.”
He also credits his work in rural Mississippi as an immeasurable factor that can’t be overlooked when it comes to his prospects in November.
“Nobody’s factored in my livestock experience over the past 35 years, and the work I’ve done in these rural communities.”