Outgoing agriculture commissioner says he’s backing Hyde-Smith in GOP primary

PHILADELPHIA, Miss. — Outgoing Mississippi Agriculture Commissioner Lester Spell Jr. says he is supporting Cindy Hyde-Smith in the Republican Party primary next Tuesday.

Spell told a Neshoba County Fair crowd that he voting for Hyde-Smith because he believes she is the most qualified candidate in the race for agriculture commissioner. Hyde-Smith is chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee.

Hyde-Smith is one of three candidates competing in Tuesday’s Republican primary, and the GOP nominee will face Democrat Joel Gill and the Reform Party’s Cathy L. Toole in the Nov. 8 general election.

The other Republicans in the race are Max Phillips of Taylorsville and Dannie Reed of Ackerman.