Politics of PERS could be problem for GOP

Gov. Haley Barbour is the best political tactician I have ever known. He knows his voters and he knows how to push their buttons to get them to push the button for Republican candidates.

But, I think he may be slipping a bit lately. Those who look to Father Haley to lead them down the right political path might walk off a cliff over a seemingly harmless issue.

Last week, Barbour announced the formation of a commission to study and make recommendations about the Mississippi Public Employees Retirement System.

Study a concern

Sounds innocent. It couldn’t hurt to study the retirement system. But the announcement in the midst of an election will immediately raise red flags for state and local government employees, teachers, law enforcement personnel and others who depend on the system. They already are defensive about it. They also provide one of the strongest political forces in the state.

Clarion Ledger
David Hampton
8/22/11