Candidates scurrying as deadline nears 2/17/2015

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Candidates scurrying as deadline nears

By Rupert Howell
There are only nine working days remaining before this year’s election qualifying deadline with some candidates holding cards close to their vest to see what ballot position may be most beneficial.

Incumbent Dennis Darby who last election cycle ran independent has yet to qualify. But he has let it be known that he will be a candidate.

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Former Panola County Sheriff Otis Griffin Jr., who won a non-partisan special election to fill an unexpired term then lost as the Democratic candidate against Darby in the general election in 2011, says he too will be a candidate, but has yet to decide under what flag, presumably Democrat or independent, to qualify.

The withdrawal of incumbent District Two Justice Court Judge Willie Joiner from the primary election may also have potential judicial candidates scurrying to qualify prior to the Friday, February 27 deadline.

Two candidates have qualified for the District Two Justice Court position. Incumbent District One Justice Court Judge Mike Wilson, a Democrat, thus far is unchallenged.

None of the of other county-wide incumbents have opponents at presstime Monday. That includes offices of the tax assessor/collector, circuit and chancery Clerks, coroner and county prosecutor.

Buck Harris has yet to draw a challenger for the First Judicial District’s Constable position. He is a Democrat.

In the Second Judicial District incumbent Democrat Ray Hawkins is being challenged by Albert Perkins in the Democratic Primary and independent Earl Burdette will face the primary winner in the November 3 general election.

In Supervisor District One, incumbent Democrat James Birge has yet to draw an opponent.
Incumbent Democrat District Two Supervisor Vernice Avant will be in a primary election with William Pride, Jr.

John F. Thomas is also an incumbent Democrat and thus far faces a primary challenge from Boyce “Crow” Crowell who qualified in late January in District Three.

District Four supervisor’s race has the most activity so far with incumbent Democrat Kelly Morris being challenged in the primary by Keith A. Moore and Donald Phelps. As of now, the winner of that race faces Republican candidate Ken Williams and independent candidate Mike H. Moore in the November general election.

District Five Democrat incumbent Cole Flint currently faces Deliley Gatson in the August 4 Democratic primary.

Additional candidates may join the race until the Friday, February 27 deadline. This story does not include Mississippi House and Senate candidates who qualify with the Mississippi Secretary of State.