After Tuesday's defeat of four DeSoto County Republicans at the hand of anti-public education forces, one has to wonder why House Speaker Philip Gunn (R-Clinton) allowed his caucus members (two of whom are committee chairmen) to be attacked like they were and ultimately defeated.
As a reminder, DeSoto County Republican Reps. Forrest Hamilton, Wanda Jennings, Pat Nelson, and Gene Alday were all victims of a PAC that has been promoting the anti-public education agenda of Philip Gunn and the Bomgar Caucus.
In speech after speech, Gunn puts county, city, and community leaders on notice that if they do not send a Republican to the Capitol in January, they will get no seat at the table when it comes to leadership and decision-making. The question becomes what good it does to send a Republican to the Capitol when the Republican Speaker of the House kicks the chair out from under his own membership and does nothing to pick them up. Gunn publicly defends his position of changing the state flag, but he does very little to defend his fellow Republican legislators who disagree with him on education issues.
If this is how the Republican leadership treats its members, Republican candidates running for the House of Representatives touting their close relationship to Speaker Gunn should understand that Gunn will use you and lose you just like he has done his soon-to-be former colleagues from DeSoto County. Remember that you can either support public education or be a Republican, but you cannot do both. If you try to do both, Speaker Gunn will not have your back when the attack ads from other Republicans start flying.