It’s primary day in Mississippi and we’ll be covering both the GOP and Democratic gubernatorial races tonight.
A few quick facts:
- Polls opened at 7am and close at 7pm central time.
- Mississippi is a runoff state so if neither of tonight’s winner breaks the 50% mark, there will be a runoff between the top 2 on August 27th.
- It’s an open race because 2 term incumbent Republican Phil Bryant is term-limited.
There are 8 candidates on the Democratic side. 4 term Attorney General Jim Hood is considered the frontrunner.
On the GOP side there are 3 candidates, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves, former State Supreme Court Justice Bill Waller, and State Representative Robert Foster.
Polling on the race is scarce but a recent Mason-Dixon survey found Reeves leading Waller 41% to 31% and Foster trailing them at 13%. If those results hold, Reeves and Waller would head to the runoff.
The folks at Medium Buying (follow them on Twitter @mediumbuying) have been tracking ad spending in this race and share their thoughts on the state of play:
“While Jim Hood will coast to a Democrat primary win on Tuesday, there is some speculation and public polling that shows Tate Reeves and Bill Waller could be headed to a runoff. A runoff would not only be a 3 week distraction (The Runoff will be on Tuesday, August 27)) from the general election showdown with Hood, but would likely turn negative, meaning the runoff winner would have to repair their image and consolidate the GOP base on short order before the fall. Based on media spending Tate Reeves, has significantly outspent Waller on all mediums, and should be headed to the general without any problems, but Waller was a former Supreme Court Justice in the northern third of the state, which gives him a geographic base in the Columbus-Tupelo-W. Point, Memphis, and Greenwood-Greenville DMA market’s + his father and former Governor Bill Waller Sr’s (72-76) residual name ID statewide. Public polls aside, most insiders see Tate Reeves winning, and setting up an interesting general election showdown with the folksy outgoing Democrat Attorney General Jim Hood.”