Mississippi’s 1st District conservative but picky

Thirteen candidates are vying for the position left vacant in February when Nunnelee lost his battle to brain cancer. All but one — Walter Zinn Jr. of Pontotoc — are Republican. And while Zinn has the smarts and qualifications to lead the 1st District, he doesn’t enjoy the same favorable circumstances that got Childers elected.

It’s anyone’s guess who among the 13 will win this year’s race, but most bets are on a Republican.

“As compared to the rest of the state, that area in particular does have a significant number of the remaining old-time Jamie Whitten Democrats …, but those folks are in decline,” said Marty Wiseman, former head of Mississippi State University’s Stennis Institute of Government. “It’s a Republican district like the rest of the red South. It’s virtually hopeless for a Democrat, but not impossible.”