Picayune — A group of state Senators, including Tony Smith and Angela Burks Hill, from Pearl River County have joined forces in a Mississippi Senate Conservative Coalition (MSCC).
The group released a statement Wednesday, the day before the special session on Medicaid, called by Governor Phil Bryant. In the statement, the group announced their dedication to the advancement of conservative ideas and legislation with the common goal of defeating legislation that conflicts with proven conservative principles.
The statement listed: Fiscal responsibility, low taxes, job creation, economic opportunity, free-market principles, traditional values and traditional federalism designed to empower the state among the coalition’s guiding principles.
It stated its position that meaningful reform should work to reduce the program’s size, scope and cost to state tax payers; increase reliance among the middle class; eliminate disincentives for poor Americans to become middle-class Americans; return power, responsibility and flexibility to the states, localities, charities, and families. In addition, it would ensure scarce public resources actually end up serving those most in need of public help.
Coalition Chairman Sen. Chris McDaniel, (R-Ellisville) stated, “The present disagreement over Medicaid expansion serves as a perfect catalyst for the formation of this group of conservatives. Medicaid is in serious need of reform, not expansion. We will therefore work together to fight expansion while fashioning a Medicaid solution, in addition to providing additional policy reforms that will further our conservative message and build a stronger Mississippi.”
Gov. Phil Bryant’s office weighed in on both the Coalition and the special session.
Bryant spokesman Mick Bullock said, “The House of Representatives has enjoyed the benefits of having a working conservative coalition for many years and the Governor is encouraged by their recent formation in the Senate and look forward to working with them as they fight for fiscal responsibility and conservative values.
Gov. Bryant issued the following statement Friday, regarding the conclusion of the two-day special legislative session.
“Today’s success is a victory for the vulnerable and is a result of working together with the leadership in the House and Senate. We reauthorized the Division of Medicaid, ensured it can continue without another upheaval in the near future and appropriated funding for its operation—and we stopped expansion of ObamaCare while doing so. Both Speaker of the House Philip Gunn and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves showed exemplary leadership, and I am proud of them both.”
On Monday, Senator Angela Hill said, “Both bills passed and the technical bill was passed as an amendment to the authorization bill. I’m proud to be a part of the MSCC.
“Taxpayers expect legislators to go the extra mile to make sure we do not grow government and create unnecessary burdens for the business community and everyday, hardworking tax payers in our state. They expect us to be knowledgeable of the bills we are voting on.
“The MSCC is committed to work alongside our colleagues in the Senate and House , as well as leadership to get the job done well.”