Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Sid Salter: Political Heat Should Include More Than Thermometer at Neshoba

There will be just over seven hours of political speaking at the 2019 Neshoba County Fair, but most of the attention will focus on a half-hour on Thursday morning, a half-hour on Thursday afternoon, and a half-hour or so on Wednesday afternoon.

Gubernatorial contenders Tate Reeves, Jim Hood, and Bill Waller Jr.speak back-to-back between 10:10 to 10:40 a.m. on Thursday. The Attorney General contenders speak Thursday afternoon back-to-back. The secretary of state candidates will speak back-to-back on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, July 30, Neshoba County candidates for offices from constable to county supervisor to sheriff will speak. The most hotly contested local race is for sheriff with five candidates with three Republicans and two Democrats. It’s instructive to note that 10 of the 12 local candidates speaking at Neshoba are Republicans.

On Wednesday, July 31, there will be 22 candidates speaking seeking district and statewide offices with 11 Republicans and 11 Democrats. Speakers will include: at 8:30 a.m., Bruce Barton (D), Central District Public Service Commission candidate; 8:40 a.m., DeKeither Stamps (D), Central Dist. PSC candidate; 8:50 a.m., Ryan Brown (D), Central Dist. PSC candidate; 9 a.m., Brent Bailey (R), Central Dist. PSC candidate; 9:10 a.m., Nic Lott (R), Central Dist. PSC candidate; 9:20 a.m. incumbent Central District Public Service Commissioner Cecil Brown (D). Brown is not seeking re-election.

Other Wednesday speakers include: 9:30 a.m., Robert Amos (D), Insurance Commissioner candidate; 9:40 a.m., incumbent Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney (R); 9:50 a.m., incumbent State Auditor Shad White (R); 10 a.m., incumbent Central District Highway Commissioner Dick Hall (R), who is not seeking re-election; 10:10 a.m., Ricky Cole (D), candidate for Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce; 10:20 a.m., incumbent Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce Andy Gipson (R); 10:30 a.m., Lt. Gov. candidate Shane Quick (R); 10:40 a.m., Lt. Gov. candidate Jay Hughes (D); and 10:50 a.m., Lt. Gov. candidate Delbert Hosemann (R).

The Wednesday political speaking will be divided, as usual, by a break for the traditional Meridian Day program from 11:15 a.m. until 1 p.m. Resuming the political speeches will be: 1 p.m., Butch Lee (R), Central Dist. Transportation Commission candidate; 1:10 p.m., Marcus Wallace (D), Transportation Commission candidate; and 1:20 p.m., Willie Simmons (D), Central Dist. Transportation Commission candidate.

The final Wednesday Neshoba County Fair speakers will include: 1:30 p.m., Maryra Hodges Hunt (D), Secretary of State candidate; 1:40 p.m., Johnny Dupree (D), Secretary of State candidate; 1:50 p.m., Michael Watson (R), Secretary of State candidate; and 2 p.m., Sam Britton (R), Secretary of State candidate.

On Thursday, August 1, there will be 19 candidates speaking seeking statewide offices with 10 Republicans, seven Democrats, an Independent and a Constitution Party candidate. Speakers will include: 8:40 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Bob Hickingbottom (Constitution); 8:50 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Albert Wilson (D); 9 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Michael Brown (D); 9:10 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Velesha Williams (D); 9:20 a.m., gubernatorial candidate David Singletary (independent); and 9:30 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Robert J. Ray (D).

A break from the gubernatorial candidate parade will come at 9:40 p.m., when Speaker of the Mississippi House Philip Gunn will address fairgoers as has become tradition.

Gubernatorial candidates will then continue including: 9:50 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Robert Foster (R); 10 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Robert Schuler Smith (D); 10:10 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Bill Waller, Jr. (R); 10:20 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Jim Hood (D); and at 10:30 a.m., gubernatorial candidate Tate Reeves (R). Gov. Phil Bryant will speak at 10:40 a.m., his eighth and final NCF speech as governor.

Following a break for the Coastal Mississippi Day, Thursday political speaking will resume, including: 1 p.m., Treasurer candidate David McRae (R); 1:10 p.m., Treasurer candidate Buck Clarke (R); 1:20 p.m., Attorney General candidate Andy Taggart (R); 1:30 p.m., Attorney General candidate Jennifer Riley Collins (D); 1:40 p.m., Attorney General candidate Mark Baker (R); and 1:50 p.m., Attorney General candidate Lynn Fitch (R).

Sid Salter is a syndicated columnist. Contact him at


Of Seersucker and Sweat Rags said...

Both Neshoba and Sid have far outlived their useful life. Sid hasn't been relevant in fifteen years and the Neshoba County Fair is certainly no barometer (or thermometer) of anything.

Anonymous said...

I've been to the Neshoba County Fair for the first & last time about 20 years ago. It was hot, dusty and just plain miserable. I guess you just have to be from there in order to appreciate it.

Kingfish said...

Its a joke. The campaigns fill the seats with their workers. The candidate makes the speech, then instantly the press releases go out talking about how their boy stormed the sandhills of Neshoba.

Anonymous said...

I agree. Sid Salter is pointless and has been for years. Soon we will be stuck with another story about the family cabin. Geezzz

Anonymous said...

Its a miserable place full of miserable people. For once I wish a major candidate would shun the whole thing.

Its hell to be a campaign worker for a candidate with a minuscule hope of a post-election appointment because you can't call in sick that week. It just sucks.

Anonymous said...

I agree. Sid Salter is pointless and has been for years. Soon we will be stuck with another story about the family cabin. Geezzz

Anonymous said...

I can't figure out if those who are blasting Neshoba as irrelevant are supporters or Tate or Fitch. They are both afraid of any forum where they are supposed to be on the same stage with their opponents.

Cynical Sam said...

But do they roll up their sleeves before going on stage?

Anonymous said...

Salter is beyond his prime. He should just go away. The fair is great..if..U enjoy being hot and miserable..or..wet..muddy and miserable..

Anonymous said...

The fair was relevant when everybody in the state was hot and miserable. Now we all have AC. We are still miserable we are not about to be hot and stand in the sun for 3 days listening to BS. The only people who go to the fair are idiots who spent $300k on a cabin they can use once a year and they like to show it off, or campaign volunteer political wanna be's.

Anonymous said...

Good Lord, y'all are some miserable and negative a-holes. Sid is knowledgeable and relevant and the Fair is FUN. Get over yourselves.

Anonymous said...

Don’t forget all the cs electric company lobbyists that will be in attendance.

Anonymous said...

3:55, damn your economics major didn't do very much good for your intelligence.

There are 600 cabins at the NCF, and most of them haven't been "bought" for the past several decades. Yes, people that have bought a cabin within the past five years have paid $150k - $250k for a cabin, but most of the owners spent several hundred or a few thousand dollars for their initial investment. (Just like a lake house or a hunting camp, the annual upkeep costs can be expensive, but so can a condo on the beach.)

Don't know which "idiots" you are talking about that you claim are the "only people that go to the fair" that spent $300k for a cabin - their are many other common folks that attend, and enjoy it without that investment.

And for all the political wannabees on this site, most of the folks that go to the NCF don't go for the politics - that is one small part of the week plus activities. Granted, if you were one of those, and went and spent a few hours on a Thursday for the political speaking, you probably had a miserable time. Most of the folks that were enjoying it were not hanging out with you on the square, but were enjoying the week with family, friends, and neighbors. Speaking for that group, we are glad for you to keep your fat rear end at home - we can do quite well enjoying the week without you.

Getchur Mint Julep Here! said...

It's like going to a car show too. On the way in to the sweltering venue, one gets to see lots of MHP cars all shined up, some with their array of blue lights throbbing. Sort of a 'blue vein throbber' for the testosterone crowd.

And these candidates do indeed need the protection of Mississippi's finest, lest someone should throw an egg or tomato at the stage.

Nothing of value has been uttered from this stage since Fordice threatened to take Molpus 'to the woodshed'.

Anonymous said...

6:06 - Can we assume you have reached up on the top closet shelf and dusted off your panama hat for the occasion? And don't forget that half-pint of peach brandy for your man-purse. Bandanas for sweat rags are definitely not in style unless you wear over-hauls.

But Will Gallo Be A No-Show said...

The true test of whether the venue has lasting significance will be whether Gallo sends Mary Weeden or Steve Azar to stand in for him.

Anonymous said...

John Bell Williams once berated William Winter from the NCF stage , calling him Wee Willie Winter and saying his experience in office consisted of holding women’s jobs. Now-Senator Walter Michel, when he challenged Treasurer Marshall Bennett, said from the stage that Bennett hoes both ways — liberal and conservative. And the first ever NCF debate between Fordice and Molpus was an instant classic, with Molpus supporters flashing signs saying Molpus: A True Family Man and Fordice supporters wearing buttons saying I’m Sick Of Dick. There is a lot of history from the NCF, not the least of which is the kick off of Ronald Reagan’s successful campaign in 1980. It’s a fun break from the hustle and bustle of the everyday work week and during a political year, it is even better.

Anonymous said...

But in the grand scheme @7:30 NCF is meaningless on Election Day.

Anonymous said...

There are some very miserable souls on this website.
The fair is not my choice for a vacation spot, and I'm not a native of this State, but having been graciously invited by friends to attend more than a few times, I can see why the fair is family tradition for many.
Aside from the great food spreads greeting cabin guests, it's a time to reconnect with long time family friends who are now spread far and wide. It's a fun event for the children who keep the long relationships going as they become friends.
The politics are likely less relevant these days, but a fair ticket is cheaper than paying to hear a candidate at a fund raiser. At least, one can tell if he or she can speak in complete sentences and dress appropriately.
Some of you really need to work on having a fuller life if you are this consumed with politics and/or hatred for those who you perceive have more than you think you have or have different likes and dislikes.
No one is forcing you to go to the fair. You can go places you enjoy and we'll be happy for you.
And, I doubt many of you blasting Sid have ever met him. I have. He's a nice guy. I came to respect him greatly for his tender and loving support of his wife who died of MS. I don't always agree with his views but he certainly is entitled to have them. Frankly, if you agree with everything anyone person says, you are thinking for yourselves and are foolish. No one is right all the time or knows everything about everything. Perhaps, you might think about being openminded and listening.

Anonymous said...

Kingfish is correct.

The NCF is a joke regarding political speeches. And, I agree with the others who state that unless you have a cabin, like Sid, and are from the area, like Sid, there is no need to attend, like most of us.

I'm surprised that Tate is even showing up since he runs away from any place where he has to share a stage with Waller, Hood, and others and only talks about national issues instead of the concerns of Mississippians. As for Fitch, she would need more hairspray to make it through the NCF humidity.

Kingfish said...

Just once I would like to see Triumph come to it.

Anonymous said...

@ 2:44pm

Its a miserable place full of miserable people.

Thanks for describing Mississippi

Anonymous said...

KF is correct? How would you know. Bet KF hasn't been to NCF any time during the past decade.

Truth is, NCF was the political site prior to today's technology. Now, instead of stump speeches, the political speaking is largely an event playing to the TV audience. But there are hundreds of folks that still gather round the square to hear the speeches, and no KF, they are not all brough in by the candidates.

But as was said above, most folks on the fairgrounds are not there for the politics. Many do go hang out during the speeches as part of the day, just as they go to the square for the flea market, or the talent show, or the veterans day program. They go as part of that days activities but it's not the reason they are spending their week in the summer heat on the sacred grounds. Family, fun, food, all mixed in with horse racing, music entertainment, midway rides - different things for different folks.

But there is often something fun coming from the political speaking. A few of those were mentioned above, but there have been many, many more. Most every year brings about at least one good quote with a shot taken across the Pavillion stage.

For those that don't like it, stay home and read the press releases - those things that KF depends on for much of his scoops. You'll miss anything that might be noteworthy - and also enjoying fellowship with friends.

But with friends like some of the folksame on this blog that only want to butch and complain all the time - who needs enemies?

Anonymous said...

Salter @ 8:16 defends himself and the NCF but is quick to pretend to be someone who is 'not a native of Mississippi'.

Bill Minor was no-doubt 'compassionate' too. But, otherwise...

Kingfish said...

I'm referring to the political speech days, not the fair itself.

Anonymous said...

Hey, July 11, 2019 at 9:07 AM "Thanks for describing Mississippi"
Please get the hell out then.

Rod Knox said...

What influence does the NCF have on the voters of Mississippi? Only a handful of Mississippians attend and it's likely that the majority of adults are clueless what goes on there. The grand event seems mostly the opportunity for candidates to beg for financial support from wealthy business owners in return for implied future influence.

Anonymous said...

One election year I set up a boiled peanut stand under my truck umbrella on Highway 25. I didn't have many customers but had a grande time watching those MHP vehicles zipping by, blues running, 88 mph. That was a sight to see for hours.

Almost like game day headin' up to Starkvegas.

Anonymous said...

9:48am, 8:16 am here and I'm not even the same gender as Sid. I have met him and you haven't. I came to Mississippi over 40 years ago.
I did meet Bill Minor too.
Unlike you, I care more about someone's character and disposition than their political point of view. I think in this country we are suppose to like the notion that not everyone moves in goosestep and that's a strength not a weakness. New ideas can blossom.
I also find that life is more interesting by not limiting myself to those who know and think and like I do. I even like to talk to men!
As a result, I now like gospel music and the blues and eating raw oysters and SEC football. I'm far more conservative on some issues and discovered neither party is always right on everything and omit some critical facts. I understand that not everyone lives in the same bubble and others have legitimate concerns I had never experienced. And, I see that those who never left my hometown, still have the same negative view of Mississippi they had in the 60's unless I've gotten them to come for a visit and see that it's not just one dimensional.
Do try to entertain the possibly that if you had grown up somewhere else, you might not hold the same beliefs you have now. Culture influences how you think. The peer group to which you want to belong and fit in, colors how you think.
Try to keeping learning. It's fun.

Anonymous said...

10:26; Speaking of 'knowing everything about everything, while you were typing out your little self-serving ditty, attempting rather weakly to sound like Paul Harvey, did it not occur to you that you have no damned idea who does or doesn't know Salter or who might have 'met' Minor?

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