Thursday, May 30, 2013

Mayoral races to watch next Tuesday, Part 1

There are a few mayor's races left around the state that are hotly contested.  I'm going to take a brief look at those, and this is the first in a series.

Ocean Springs: Mayor Connie Moran (D) is seeking a third term, and is being challenged by Republican John McKay.  Mayor Moran successfully led Ocean Springs through Katrina and has spearheaded quite the revitalization of its Downtown.  She fended off well-funded Republican darling Scott Walker in the last election, and McKay has been linked with Walker's father and the troubles at DMR.  That, however, hasn't stopped Gov. Phil Bryant from heading south to support McKay. Should be interesting to see what shakes out Tuesday here.

Meridian:  Incumbent Mayor Cheri Barry (R) defeated challenger Percy Bland last time around by just a few hundred votes.  Bland, a State Farm agent, would become the first African-American mayor of Meridian if he is successful.  Last time around, the influential Young family didn't support Bland.  This time, though, Rep. Charles Young, Jr. (D - Meridian) has given impassioned speeches in support of Bland.  Will the troubles in the police department (unlicensed police chief), civil rights abuses in the school system (consent decree with the U.S. Dept. of Justice), and the support of the Young family be enough to push Bland over the top this time?

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