Mississippi’s House Speaker gets ready to end career

“I was in your place 32 years ago,” said current Mississippi House Speaker, Democrat Billy McCoy as he welcomed newly elected lawmakers to the legislature. “I know what an exciting time this is for you.”

His welcome comes with his departure from more than three decades inside the Mississippi State Capitol representing his hometown district of Rienzi in Northeast Mississippi.

McCoy says when he first got to the legislature, the state had a lot of work to do.

“At that time we were not even status quo.” McCoy said. “Now we compete with any state in the nation for the best in business and industry and opportunity.”

For the last eight years, McCoy has led the House of Representatives as speaker and when it came time for re-election this year, McCoy decided it was time to step down and retire from a life in the spotlight often spent coming under fire by Republicans for leadership decisions.