Republican candidates, spearheaded by Governor Reeves, hold stronger position than Democrats as Primary Elections approach

Published 6:06 pm Tuesday, July 11, 2023

The latest campaign finance filings from each statewide and state commission candidate have been filed by their campaigns with the Mississippi Secretary of State’s office.

Candidates for state offices in this year’s Mississippi elections were required to file updated campaign finance reports by July 10 for activity in June 2023.

Incumbent Republican Governor Tate Reeves remains a formidable financial force. This strong financial position extends across the GOP Primary field, as well as over his main adversary in the forthcoming General Election, Democrat Brandon Presley.

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Reeves raised the most out of all statewide candidates in June, bringing in over $1 million for the month, leaving him with over five times the cash on hand as that of Presley.

Unable to match the financial heights of Reeves, Presley’s camp has drawn comparisons between their present monetary standing and that of former Attorney General Jim Hood, who lost to Reeves in the General Election in 2019.

The Presley team highlighted the fact that the current Northern District Public Service Commissioner brought in approximately $200,000 more in June compared to Hood’s fundraising at the same stage four years ago.

Presley’s biggest donors for June came from out-of-state. They were Gordon McKernan Injury Attorneys in Louisiana ($25,000), Attorney Steven Phillips in California ($50,000), Ania Management in New Jersey ($25,000), and Kathy Olsen in Tennessee ($15,000).

For Reeves, a group listed as Mississippi Strong out of Washington D.C. donated $500,000 to his campaign.

With the exception of Central District Transportation Commissioner Willie Simmons, no other Democratic candidate vying for a statewide or commission seat has managed to surpass the significant milestone of $100,000 in fundraising, the majority failing to reach five-digit figures.

As the Republican Primary approaches, all eyes remain fixed on the Lt. Governor’s race in Mississippi. Incumbent Delbert Hosemann has maintained a strong financial position. In June, Hosemann’s campaign brought in nearly $548,000, leaving him with ten times more cash on hand than his main opponent, State Senator Chris McDaniel.

A notable distinction between McDaniel and Hosemann’s reports lies in the donation amounts contributed by supporters. McDaniel’s team primarily received lower-dollar donations ranging from $10 to $25, while Hosemann amassed a significant sum from donors giving $500, $1,000 and more.

Hosemann spent more than $830,000 during the month, allocating a substantial portion towards media buys throughout the state as the incumbent seeks to combat McDaniel’s aggressive ground game and social media presence.

The next round of campaign finance reports is slated for submission on Aug. 1. These reports will provide insights into the pre-primary election financial activities in the lead-up to the Primary Election Day on Aug. 8.

Source: Original reporting by Magnolia Tribune