Home » NEWS » Govt/Politics » Bramlett, 1983 GOP nominee for Mississippi governor, dies

Bramlett, 1983 GOP nominee for Mississippi governor, dies

JACKSON — Leon C. Bramlett, the Republican whose nomination for Mississippi governor in 1983 was eclipsed by discredited sexual accusations against the Democrat who defeated him, died Monday. He was 92.

An employee at Meredith-Nowell Funeral Home in Clarksdale said Bramlett, a businessman and farmer, died at his son’s home in Clarksdale. Plans for services were pending.

Bramlett was an All-American football player for the U.S. Naval Academy in 1944 and 1945, and coached there in 1948-49. He was inducted into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in 1988.

He was a former Democrat who unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for governor in 1979.

Bramlett became the GOP nominee in 1983, but his candidacy was overshadowed during the final weeks of the campaign when three transvestite prostitutes publicly claimed they had sex with the Democratic nominee, state Attorney General Bill Allain.

Bramlett refused to promote the story, which was based on an investigation funded by wealthy Republican campaign donors.

Allain denied the accusations and was elected governor. The prostitutes later recanted their stories. Allain died in 2013.

Clarke Reed, a Greenville businessman who was Mississippi Republican Party chairman from 1966 to 1975, described Bramlett as “a solid conservative.”

“He took the high road in his campaign, and some of his friends didn’t,” Reed said in an interview Monday.

Bramlett worked in Mississippi for one of the state’s Republican U.S. senators, Thad Cochran, for about 13 years and retired from Cochran’s staff in March 2014.

“He was a gentleman and as fine a man as you would want to meet,” Cochran said in a statement Monday. “His service to the people of Mississippi is indicative of a life characterized by service to others and a love of family, the Delta and our country. Leon was a friend. My staff members and I extend our sincere condolences to the Bramlett family.”

Republican Gov. Phil Bryant said Bramlett “served his state and his nation with honor and distinction.”

“In everything he did, as a Naval Academy graduate, a U.S. Marine, a Republican gubernatorial nominee, and a community leader, he always served with dignity, principle, and dedication,” Bryant said.


… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About Associated Press

Leave a Reply