About a hundred people met for dinner Tuesday night in New Albany and heard Mississippi’s First Lady Deborah Bryant discuss her H.O.M.E. project.
The occasion was a joint meeting of the Union County Republican Women and the Pilot Club of New Albany, at the First United Methodist Church.
Bryant said the acronym H.O.M.E. stands for the her areas of focus as the state’s first lady. The four letters refer to Healthcare, Outdoors, Mansion/Military and Education.
The wife of Mississippi’s 64th and current Governor Dewey Phillip Bryant, Deborah Bryant did medical records work and was a manager in the healthcare industry for nearly 40 years. She continued with her own career when Phil Bryant became State Auditor in 1995 and during his two terms as Mississippi’s lieutenant governor, to which office he was first elected in 2003 and re-elected in 2007.
Phil Bryant was first elected Mississippi governor in 2011, following two-term Governor Haley Barbour. He is running without serious opposition this year for a second term. He easily won the Republican nomination, and he does not face serious opposition in the November general election.
The Democratic nominee for governor is a man named Robert Gray, a truck driver with no money and no hope of getting any. Gray has not received support, financial or otherwise, from the state or national Democratic Party. Perhaps not since James W. “Bootie” Hunt won the Democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate in 1996 has there been a nominee for statewide office whose prospects for election have been any more bleak than those faced this year by Robert Gray.
Bootie Hunt won the Democratic nomination that year with 58.75% of the vote, and Republican Thad Cochran was seeking his fourth term. Hunt’s friends in Choctaw and Oktibbeha counties wanted in on the fun, so they collected money and bought Hunt a bus ticket to the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. The Democrats spurned poor Bootie, wouldn’t even allow him to enter the convention hall. He slept in a homeless shelter while in the Windy City.
Hunt got only a quarter-million votes against the invincible Cochran, but was not discouraged. He immediately announced he would run again, and unsuccessfully sought the Democratic nomination for governor in 1999. The New York Times interviewed Hunt and asked if he could handle the rigors of still another campaign.
”All that de-pends on the Good Lord,” Hunt answered. ”But I’ve always been a person who wants to see how far I can go out on a limb before it gets chopped off.”
You gotta love Mississippi politics.
[Editor’s note: Our friends in Winston County, Mississippi, believe Deborah Bryant is the Governor’s far better half. The First Lady was in Louisville on April 28th of last year when a tornado destroyed much of the town and killed ten people. Instead of going back to Jackson to sleep that night in the Mansion, Deborah Bryant stayed in Louisville and tried to help the people who were injured and the hundreds whose homes were destroyed that afternoon. Our friend, Giles Ward of Louisville, reminded us yesterday that Deborah Bryant remained in Louisville for two or three days and did everything she could to help, including physical labor.]
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