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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Election Day in Mississippi: 4 Primaries for House and 1 Senate Seat

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Mississippians head to the polls with party primaries for all four of the state’s U.S. House seats and one U.S. Senate seat.

Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. CDT Tuesday. If runoff elections are needed, they will be held April 2. The general election is Nov. 5.

Here’s a look at the candidates who are vying for the nominations.

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HOUSE DISTRICT 1

Rep. Trent Kelly is unopposed for the Republican nomination in north Mississippi’s 1st Congressional District. He is a former district attorney and has been in the House since winning a 2015 special election. Kelly is a member of the House Armed Services Committee.

Dianne Dodson Black and Bronco Williams are competing in the Democratic primary.

Black is a business owner and was the Democratic nominee in the 1st District in 2022. She says she wants to support President Joe Biden’s economic policies, restore abortion rights and limit access to semi-automatic rifles.

Williams, a theater and Spanish teacher, says he wants the U.S. to invest in alternative energy sources, improve transportation and increase access to health care.

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HOUSE DISTRICT 2

Rep. Bennie Thompson is unopposed for the Democratic nomination in the 2nd Congressional District, which encompasses most of the city of Jackson and rural areas in the Delta and along the Mississippi River. Thompson has been in the House since he won a 1993 special election. He is the ranking Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee.

The three candidates in the Republican primary are Ron Eller, Andrew Scott Smith and Taylor Turcotte.

Eller is a military veteran and physician assistant who ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination in the 2nd District in 2022. He says he supports construction of a U.S.-Mexico border wall and expansion of domestic energy production.

Smith has worked in farming and commercial real estate. He says he wants to rejuvenate agriculture, rebuild infrastructure, reinforce the southern U.S. border and require more transparency in government.

Turcotte has worked in advertising and as a regional sales manager for a vacuum cleaner company. She says she is running because she wants to secure the U.S. borders.

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HOUSE DISTRICT 3

Republican Rep. Michael Guest is unopposed in the primary and the general election in central Mississippi’s 3rd Congressional District. Guest is a former district attorney who was first elected to the U.S. House in 2018. He is chairman of the House Ethics Committee and vice chairman of the Homeland Security Committee.

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HOUSE DISTRICT 4

Rep. Mike Ezell faces two challengers in the Republican primary in south Mississippi’s 4th Congressional District.

Ezell is a former sheriff and was first elected to the House in 2022. He has voted to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and to end U.S. military assistance to Ukraine. Former President Donald Trump endorsed him this year.

Carl Boyanton and Michael McGill are challenging Ezell in the Republican primary.

Boyanton has owned a produce distribution company. He ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for the 4th District U.S. House seat in 2020 and 2022. He says he wants to enact term limits, eliminate some federal agencies and limit government spending.

McGill is a military veteran. He says he wants to improve power grids, highways and other infrastructure, increase funding for mental health services and eliminate pay disparities between women and men.

Craig Elliot Raybon is unopposed for the Democratic nomination in the 4th District.

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SENATE

Sen. Roger Wicker faces two challengers in the Republican primary — Ghannon Burton and Dan Eubanks.

Wicker was appointed to the Senate in 2017 by then-Gov. Haley Barbour after fellow Republican Trent Lott stepped down. Wicker is an attorney and served in the Mississippi state Senate before winning a U.S. House seat in north Mississippi in 1994. He is the ranking member of the Armed Services Committee and has pushed to expand shipbuilding for the U.S. military. He has been endorsed by Trump.

Burton is a military veteran. He says he believes the 2020 presidential election was rigged, and he criticizes Wicker for voting to certify the results. Burton says he wants to close the U.S. border but he believes “globalists want it open.” Burton says he believes COVID-19 vaccines are poison.

Eubanks is a state representative and a Presbyterian pastor. He says he believes “J-6ers” — people charged in the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol — have been denied due process and are “rotting away in jail.” Eubanks says he wants to reduce federal spending and he believes Wicker’s record is “anything but conservative.”

Ty Pinkins is unopposed for the Democratic nomination. He is an attorney and ran unsuccessfully for Mississippi secretary of state in 2023. He says he wants to fight poverty and improve access to health care.

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