Sunday, February 5, 2023

Bill Crawford: Incumbent Protection Act Slims Field

 The Mississippi incumbent protection act worked like a charm. The bill authored by Rep. Jody Steverson of Ripley and adopted in 2021 moved the qualifying date for most state, district, and county elections to February 1st. 

“Early filing deadlines benefit incumbents; so do brief filing seasons,” stated the Bigger Pie Forum in its 2021 article entitled "Incumbent Protection Proposal Making Its Way Through MS Legislature."

“Since no candidate is allowed to file before January 1, the new February 1 deadline will only allow one month for candidates to file. It is likely that many who would consider running for office would not make that decision so early in the year.”

Consider the 2023 statewide elections. All eight incumbents are seeking reelection – Tate Reeves for Governor, Delbert Hosemann for Lt. Governor, Lynn Fitch for Attorney General, Michael Watson for Secretary of State, David McRae for Treasurer, Shad White for Auditor, Mike Chaney for Insurance Commissioner, and Andy Gipson for Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce. There are a number of largely unknown candidates on the ballots but only Reeves and Hosemann attracted well-known, serious opponents. 

Hosemann’s race comes up first. He is being challenged in the August Republican Primary by State Sen. Chris McDaniel. 

Reeves’ serious race will be in the November General Election. Northern District Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley will be his challenger. Both will have to escape August primaries but are expected to do so handily.

McDaniel will try to rekindle the enthusiasm he generated in his fiery but unsuccessful 2014 challenge to Sen. Thad Cochran when he got 49% of the vote. That enthusiasm had fizzled out by 2018 when he challenged Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith and got only 16% of the vote. Perhaps the surprise showing of Michael Cassidy in the low turnout first primary against Rep. Michael Guest last year sparked his hopes. Of course, Guest overwhelmed Cassidy in the runoff. With two other candidates in the primary, a tight race could result in a runoff this time. The other two candidates are Shane Quick, who drew 14% of the vote four years ago, and Tiffany Longino, a rare black Republican.

Presley has won Democratic primaries and held off GOP challengers in the northern district every four years since 2007 when he was elected Northern District Public Service Commissioner. Winning a statewide race will be harder. He is not as well known in the central and southern districts. And the weak Democratic Party slate at the top of the ticket will make it hard to generate a strong turnout of the party base. One veteran politician said Presley's only hope is that Reeves gets indicted in the TANF scandal.  

If Presley loses, this may well be the last hurrah for a moderate Democrat in statewide elections. The party's stable for such candidates looks empty.

“All things are possible for one who believes” – Mark 9:23.

Crawford is a syndicated columnist from Jackson


Anonymous said...

So now we claim that people are too stupid to sign up if only given a month to do so?

Anonymous said...

If the person can't get signed up in 31 days, I don't want them in office anyway.

“ It is likely that many who would consider running for office would not make that decision so early in the year.”

If the candidate has waited until the election year to make the decision to run, or not, I can't see them as qualified for the job. Just my opinion.

Anonymous said...

If Presley loses, this may well be the last hurrah for a moderate Democrat in statewide elections.

Maybe the last hurrah for moderate white Democrats but to allude by omission that members of, say, the LBC for example, are not moderates is completely inaccurate. Crawford's indirect indictment of black Democrats at the end of this column is striking.

Anonymous said...

“Crawford's indirect indictment of black Democrats at the end of this column is striking.”, the word I would use, is revealing, not striking.

Anonymous said...

You doofus green-bean brains: It's not a matter of not being ABLE to file during a one-month period. It's a matter of testing the waters, evaluating your chances, gaining support, rounding up potential contributors. There is zero benefit to anybody other than incumbents by having this silly rule. Of course, hello, nobody but incumbents adopted, passed and sent this one over to the Gub.

This should be challenged (by a new bill) in the legislature (if anybody there has the balls) and reversed.

I guess this is one of those end-around things which will require an initiative and referendum to get the attention of these jockstraps under the dome.

Anonymous said...

2:52, anybody with half a brain did that long before January 31

Anonymous said...

Thank you 2:52 pm.
You also have to get volunteers to staff your campaign and have a website up and running with a resume of sorts, etc.
Some of you really need to volunteer to work on a campaign so you'd have a clue about politics and wouldn't have to march in lock step with a party.

Anonymous said...

Incumbents already have the voter roles and addresses. They have party money and their own war chest in place. They've already been "campaigning" to their constituents before the election cycle by speaking to groups and mail outs.
Really, are you all that isolated? Or are you so taken for granted, you aren't invited?

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Trollfest '09

Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).

Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.

In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS.

Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS