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BILL CRAWFORD: Hospitals closing and healthcare for working poor becoming campaign issues

“Half of Mississippi’s rural hospitals at risk of closing, report says,” read the startling headline in Mississippi Today. “Thirty-one of Mississippi’s 64 rural hospitals, or 48 percent, are at ‘high financial risk,’ according to a national report of rural hospitals from independent consulting firm Navigant,” read the article. Perhaps even more startling was this from an article in News Mississippi: ...

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Lawmakers advance pay raise for Mississippi county officials

A proposed pay raise for many elected county officials in Mississippi is advancing. The House voted 93-14 on Wednesday for Senate Bill 2827 , which would be financed by increased fees for filing government documents and court cases. The Senate and House must resolve differences before the measure goes to the governor. Pay for county supervisors would increase by $10,000 ...

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Arkansas governor backs removing Confederate link to flag

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Arkansas’ governor on Monday backed an effort to change the meaning of a star on the state flag that honors the Confederacy to instead have it acknowledge Native Americans’ contributions to the state. Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson told The Associated Press that he’d support the proposal to change state law regarding Arkansas’ flag if it comes ...

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Analysis: Mississippi will see big turnover of state offices

Mississippi this year will have its biggest shake-up of statewide offices in a generation, no matter who wins in November. Five of the eight current statewide elected officials are not seeking re-election, so there are open races for governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, and treasurer. That’s a contrast to 2015, when all eight statewide officials were re-elected. ...

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BILL CRAWFORD: The new Republican reality: Debt, debt, and more debt

“The national debt has passed a new milestone, topping $22 trillion for the first time,” reported the Associated Press. “The Treasury Department’s daily statement showed Tuesday that total outstanding public debt stands at $22.01 trillion. It stood at $19.95 trillion when President Donald Trump took office on Jan. 20, 2017.” “It looks like a $9 trillion time bomb is ready ...

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Mississippi lawmakers have real fears about ‘fake meat’

Mississippi lawmakers have real fears about “fake meat,” and the state could become the latest to ban food made from plants, insects or grown in a lab from being described as meat. The state House on Thursday voted 117-0 to approve Senate Bill 2922, sending it to Gov. Phil Bryant for his signature or veto. Mississippi Agriculture Commissioner Andy Gipson ...

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Hood and Reeves headline 2019 Mississippi election field

The top of the ticket for Mississippi’s 2019 statewide election could feature the most competitive governor’s race since 2003, but a dearth of strong Democratic candidates down the ballot shows the party’s continued weakness in Mississippi. Democratic Attorney General Jim Hood and Republican Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves will be favorites in their respective August 6 primaries, but each will have ...

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Candidates for Mississippi statewide and district offices

Here are the major-party and independent candidates running for statewide offices in Mississippi this year, according to the state Democratic and Republican parties and the secretary of state’s office: GOVERNOR Democrat: Jim Hood, Robert Shuler Smith, William Bond Compton Jr, Michael Brown, Robert J. Ray, Velesha Williams, Gregory Wash, Phillip West, Albert Wilson. Republican: Robert Foster, Tate Reeves, Bill Waller ...

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Retired Justice Waller entering GOP primary for governor

A retired chief justice of the Mississippi Supreme Court says he has the best chance to win the governor’s race because he believes he will appeal to voters across party lines. Bill Waller Jr. of Jackson said he’s filing paperwork Friday to enter the Republican primary. It’s the last day for candidates to qualify for statewide, regional, legislative and county ...

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Hood proposes cut to food sales tax, sunshine for lawmakers

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jim Hood is proposing to eliminate Mississippi’s sales tax on groceries and require lawmakers to be subject to state open records law as part of a “Pledge to Mississippi Families.” Appearing with supporters at the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum in Jackson, the four-term attorney general renewed attacks on Republican Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves and other legislative leaders ...

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