(Southaven, MS) Former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour is doing more lobbying these days than anything, but he’s still got his finger on the pulse of Southern politics.
Barbour says the standoff in Washington is regrettable, but fixable, but for the political will to do so, ”The Republicans look bad, the Democrats look bad, the country’s dissatisfied, but everybody understands on thing we need. Leadership, and that’s the president’s job."
He says he’s still looking out for the state, especially in terms of economic development, which is why he supports Mississippi exploring the idea of reprocessing the nation’s nuclear fuel, if the federal government lifts its ban on the idea.
He says Mississippi already stores waste at its Grand Gulf nuclear plant, ”The people who live there petitioned me twice when I was governor to get another nuclear plant built. They want nuclear."
Barbour says people also want law and order.
He’s alarmed by increased gang violence in the Mississippi delta, but says tough laws, good law enforcement and citizen cooperation can help, along with one other thing.
”People also need to know that, citizens, particularly in rural areas, are gonna protect themselves, and the state of Mississippi allows them to protect themselves.”
Barbour supports the recent clarification allowing Mississippians to carry firearms.
But when it comes to the idea of Mississippi joining other states, and breaking away, he says history has an important lesson, ”Uh, we tried that once. It didn’t turn out so hot."
And that’s a fact that’s hard to argue with.