Tempered by tragedy, Gunn’s priorities are in order

STARKVILLE — Who is Philip Gunn, the state representative that House Republicans have tapped as their choice to succeed outgoing Democratic House Speaker Billy McCoy as the leader of that chamber of the Mississippi Legislature?

If you guessed that Gunn is a power-hungry, super ambitious politico consumed with acquiring power and influence, you’d be wrong.

If you guessed that Gunn’s conservative politics leaves him void of compassion for those who struggle with the burdens of poverty, disease or despair, you’d also be wrong.

Make no mistake, Philip Gunn in an unapologetic conservative Republican. But the Clinton native is also a Baptist and a Gideon who has experienced despair and who has suffered unspeakable tragedy in his own life. His life experiences left Gunn a man who is strong, steady and not given to wild displays of either joy or sorrow – and also a man who has a heart for service.

Clarion Ledger