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Reeves Clinches Republican Nomination for Gov., Faces Hood in General Election

By Talbert Toole
Lifestyles Editor

Left to right: Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves (photo via commons.wikimedia.org) and Attorney General Jim Hood (photo via Flickr).

*Editor’s Note: Statistics are from the New York Times’ live election coverage page.

Voters in Mississippi took to the polls Tuesday in a runoff election to decide which Republican gubernatorial candidate they want to face Democrat Attorney General Jim Hood in the November general election.

Tate Reeves, Mississippi’s current Lt. Governor, officially clinched the nomination against opponent Bill Waller in the runoff. The runoff took place after neither Waller or Reeves received 51 percent of the votes during the primary election Aug. 6.

More than 325,000 Mississippians cast their vote in the runoff, a fraction of the state’s nearly 1.8 million registered voters. Reeves received 54.3% (176,019) while Waller only garnered 45.7 percent (148,334) of the votes.

Via the New York Times.

In Lafayette County, Waller carried the Republican votes. He received 68.7% (3,427) while Reeves received only 31.1% (1,563) votes.

Now, Reeves must try to sway Waller supporters to vote for him Nov. 6 against Hood, who trailblazed the lead on the blue ticket Aug. 6 with 68.8% of the vote (199,185). The opponent with the closest gap in votes was Michael Brown, with 11.1% of votes. Velesha P. Williams—this year’s only female gubernatorial candidate—received 6.8% of votes on the night.

Waller tweeted after the race was called in Reeves’ favor that he was honored by all those who cast their ballots for him and that he and his wife, Charlotte, were grateful.

“Charlotte and I are forever grateful for your support and friendship — and for your belief in the message of the campaign as we focused on the issues to make the lives of Mississippians better in the future.”

Gov. Phil Bryant, who endorsed Reeves prior to the runoff, congratulated the newly nominated candidate via Twitter on winning the runoff.

Bryant said he looks forward to continuing the campaign for Reeves ahead of the general election; he also commended Waller on a “well-run campaign.”

Hood also made comments to the media after the runoff election concluded.

In a Facebook Live Video via Hood’s campaign page, Hood said, “Justice Waller ran a fine race… he makes me proud to be a member of the bar with him.”

However, Hood quickly switched the subject to Reeves where he criticized his policies during his tenure.

“For the past eight years, he’s been out for Tate Reeves and his cronies and those he gave our tax money to – these large out-of-state corporations,” Hood said. “He’s taken care of those people.”

As eyes were dead set on the Republican primary runoff race, many others also paid close attention to the runoff for Mississippi’s next Attorney General.

Lynn Fitch, the state’s current Treasurer, faced well-known attorney Andy Taggart in the runoff.

Fitch received a total of 52% (164,484) of the state’s votes while Taggart received 48% (151,683). In Lafayette County, Taggart, like Waller, carried the votes with 51.7% (2,418) and Fitch with 48.3% (2,259).

Fitch will face Democrat Jennifer Collins in the November general election.  

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