Republican nomination for governor, others to be decided Tuesday

By Aaron Rice
August 22, 2019

Voters in both the Republican and Democratic Party will head back to the polls on Tuesday for primary runoffs. 

This will include two statewide races on the Republican side, led by the gubernatorial runoff between Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves and former Supreme Court Justice Bill Waller. Reeves led the pack, picking up almost 49 percent of the vote. Fifty-percent plus one was needed to avoid a runoff. 

Waller finished second with 33 percent of the vote. The third place finisher, State Rep. Robert Foster, endorsed Waller last week. Reeves picked up his own endorsement from an unlikely ally, State Sen. Chris McDaniel.

McDaniel, who nearly toppled Sen. Thad Cochran in 2014, and Reeves have long been at odds despite sharing many similarities when it comes to policy. This has resulted in McDaniel being largely relegated to the backbench in the Senate though he has been a more reliable liberty vote than virtually every other member of the chamber. But for 2019, the two came together. 

“No one has more reason to be displeased with Tate Reeves than I do,” McDaniel said. “But this is not about personalities, it’s about policies… I’m willing to put aside our past because I trust that (Reeves) will govern as a conservative.”

Republicans will also be selecting their nominee for attorney general. Treasurer Lynn Fitch led the field with 44 percent of the vote. Attorney Andy Taggart finished second, outpacing State Rep. Mark Baker by about 4,500 votes. Baker proceeded to endorse Taggart after the first round. 

Republicans in the Northern District will select a nominee for Transportation Commissioner. Voters will choose between John Caldwell, who received about 31 percent of the vote in the first round and Geoffrey Yoste who received 26 percent. 

Democrats in the Central District will choose between Jackson City Councilman De’Keither Stamps and Dorothy Benford for Public Service Commissioner. Stamps received about 40 percent of the vote; Benford 33 percent. 

Along with statewide and regional runoffs, voters in districts throughout the state will also be selecting the Republican or Democratic nominees in a number of House and Senate races. 

House and Senate runoffs

SD1RChris Massey*45Michael McLendon30
SD3RKathy Chism34Kevin Walls32
SD8DKegan Coleman49Kathryn York29
SD8RBen Suber47Stephen Griffin38
SD10DAndre De’Berry34Michael Cathey31
SD13DSarita Simmons45John Alexander26
SD22DJoseph Thomas33Ruffin Smith21
SD37RMelanie Sojourner45Morgan Poore28
SD51RGary Lennep37Jeremy England36
HD10DAmanda Campbell48Nolan Webb28
HD10RKelly Morris43Brady Williamson30
HD63DStephanie Foster37Deborah Dixon*35
HD87RWilliam Andrews45Joseph Tubb27
HD88RRamona Blackledge47Gary Staples*34
HD95RJay McKnight38Patricia Willis*31
HD105RDale Goodin42Roun McNeal*37
HD106RJansen Owen41John Glen Corley*31
HD114RJeffrey Guice*43Kenneth Fountain35


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