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Miss. voters will choose state’s leaders Tuesday

November 3, 2011

By STEVEN NALLEY
citybeat@bellsouth.net

When Oktibbeha County voters head to the polls for the Nov. 8 general election, they will have the chance to pick the next crop of state leadership for the following four years.
Five unopposed candidates for state office will appear on Oktibbeha County ballots on Nov. 8 during the state general election.
The unopposed candidates include incumbent Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, incumbent state Reps. Gary Chism and Tyrone Ellis and incumbent state Sens. Gary Jackson and Bennie L. Turner.
Many more candidates for state office ran unopposed during the primaries Aug. 2. This month, however, a majority of the 17 state offices up for elections have at least two competitors, with three candidates each running for treasurer, agriculture commissioner and insurance commissioner.
Phil Bryant, the Republican candidate for governor, currently serves as lieutenant governor, an office he won in November 2007 with 57 percent of the vote. Johnny DuPree, the Democratic candidate for governor, has served three terms as Hattiesburg’s mayor.
Phil Bryant won the Republican primary in Oktibbeha County with 1,977 of 2,996 votes. In the Democratic primary, DuPree received 2,069 votes to Bill Luckett’s 2,315, but DuPree won the local runoff with 2,665 out of 4,875 votes.
Tate Reeves, the GOP candidate for lieutenant governor, currently serves as state treasurer. He has also served as president of the National Association of State Treasurers from 2006-2007. Tracella Lou O’Hara Hill, of Hattiesburg, is a Reform candidate vying for the lieutenant governor’s position. O’Hara ran for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010. The Democratic Party did not field a candidate for lieutenant governor.
In the Republican primary in Oktibbeha, Reeves received 1,801 out of 2,956 votes.
Having won the Republican primary statewide, Delbert Hosemann is running unopposed for re-election as Mississippi’s Secretary of State.
In the Republican primary in Oktibbeha, Hosemann received 2,594 out of 2,889 votes.
Jim Hood, a Democrat, is running for re-election as state attorney general. His Republican opponent, Steve Simpson, was appointed by Haley Barbour in 2008 as commissioner of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety.
Both candidates ran unopposed at the primary level.
Stacey E. Pickering, a Republican, is running for re-election as state auditor. His opponent, Ashley Norwood, is a reform candidate who ran for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010. The Democratic Party did not field a candidate for state auditor.
Pickering ran unopposed at the primary level.
Lynn Fitch, Republican candidate for state treasurer, currently serves as executive director of the Mississippi State Personnel Board. Democratic candidate Connie Moran was elected for her second term as mayor of Ocean Springs in 2009. Shawn O’Hara of Hattiesburg is a reform candidate who ran as a Democrat for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010.
In the Republican primary in Oktibbeha, Fitch received 754 votes to Lee Yancey’s 783 and Lucien Smith’s 1306, but Fitch won a runoff against Yancey in Oktibbeha with 592 votes out of 1126. Moran ran unopposed at the primary level.
Cindy Hyde-Smith, Republican candidate for state commissioner of agriculture and commerce, has served as state senator for District 39 since 2000. Democratic candidate Joel Gill was elected as mayor of Pickens in 2009. Cathy L. Toole of Biloxi is running as a reform candidate.
In the Republican primary in Oktibbeha, Hyde-Smith received 1,384 votes out of 2,888. Gill ran unopposed at the primary level.
Mike Chaney, a Republican, is running for re-election as state commissioner of insurance. His Democratic opponent, Louis Fondren, served as mayor of Moss Point from 1969-1971. Reform candidate Barbara Dale Washer ran for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010.
Chaney and Fondren ran unopposed at the primary level.
Brandon Presley, a Democrat, is running for re-election as public service commissioner for Mississippi’s northern district. His Republican opponent is Boyce Adams.
In the Republican primary in Oktibbeha, Boyce Adams received 1,793 out of 2,557 votes. Presley ran unopposed at the primary level.
Mike Tagert, a Republican, is currently running for re-election as transportation commissioner for Mississippi’s northern district. His Democratic opponent, Ray Minor, has been a small business owner in north Mississippi for more than 45 years.
Both candidates ran unopposed at the primary level.
Forrest Allgood, a Democrat, is running for re-election as district attorney for District 16. His Republican opponent, Steven C. Wallace, is an attorney in Columbus.
In the Democratic primary in Oktibbeha, Allgood received 3711 out of 5,307 votes. Wallace ran unopposed at the primary level.
Charles Jim Beckett, a Republican, is running for re-election as District 23 state representative. His Democratic opponent, Steve Whitten, ran against Beckett for the same office in 2003, when Beckett gained 57.5 percent of the vote.
Both candidates ran unopposed at the primary level.
Joey Hood, Republican candidate for District 35 state representative, is a self-employed attorney living in Ackerman. His Libertarian opponent, Jan R. “Jay” Butler of Eupora, was a delegate to the 2010 Libertarian National Convention.
In the Republican primary in Oktibbeha, Hood received 444 of 594 votes.
Gary Chism, a Republican, is running unopposed for re-election as District 37 state representative. Chism also ran unopposed at the primary level.
Tyrone Ellis, a Democrat, is running unopposed for re-election as District 38 state representative. Ellis also ran unopposed at the primary level.
Gary Jackson, a Republican, is running unopposed for re-election as state senator for District 15. Jackson also ran unopposed at the primary level.
Bennie L. Turner, a Democrat, is running unopposed for re-election as state senator for District 16. Turner also ran unopposed at the primary level.

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