Home » NEWS » Govt/Politics » Mississippi lawmakers react to Gov. Bryant’s speech

Mississippi lawmakers react to Gov. Bryant’s speech

A sampling of reaction from legislators to Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant’s 2019 State of the State speech, his eighth and last address:

» Rep. Robert Johnson III, a Natchez Democrat, said he sees Mississippi’s economy in a dimmer light than Bryant: “The state is losing population and economically. Although the governor has done a fine job of maintaining the status quo, we haven’t had any growth.”

» Rep. Trey Lamar, a Senatobia Republican, welcomed Bryant’s call for more funding for the foster care system: “That’s got to be done and we’ve got to move consistently toward that effort. We’re under a court order to do it. The court has been lenient with us but eventually a court order is a court order and it’s got to be complied with.”

» Sen. Philip Moran, a Kiln Republican, praised Bryant’s look back over his service for moving the state forward and emphasized his support of a teacher pay raise: “I feel sure we’re going to see some kind of teacher pay raise this year and they deserve it. I’m going to make sure I do everything I can that they get it.”

» Sen. Derrick Simmons, a Greenville Democrat, said he hopes Bryant’s support will push lawmakers to make more changes to state prison sentencing and rehabilitation: “Gov. Bryant has done a good job, whether he talked about it or not, on criminal justice reform. I would only hope that he would encourage his counterparts in the House and Senate to work with us on moving the needle further on criminal justice reform this year.”

» Sen. Gray Tollison, an Oxford Republican who has led the Senate Education Committee, agreed with the governor’s assessment that Republican-led educational efforts have borne fruit: “He leaves a legacy of educational reform that is making a difference in achievement for our Mississippi students. That’s exciting to see, that you actually passed a program of legislation that made a difference.”

» Rep. Sonya Williams-Barnes, a Gulfport Democrat, said she joins Bryant in welcoming the Cleveland Clinic’s diabetes center to Biloxi, but questions the governor’s broader health care strategy: “It does still concern me that we’ve had rural hospitals closing and there was no addressing of expansion of Medicaid or addressing the closure of those hospitals.”


… 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