Candidates campaigning, pushing for turnout ahead of Republican runoff in Mississippi

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HERNANDO, Miss. — Mississippi voters head to the polls next Tuesday to choose the Republican candidate for governor in a runoff election.

WREG spoke with both candidates, Tate Reeves and Bill Waller, Friday while they were on the road visiting several part of the state.

Both said they wanted to be billed as “conservatives” but differed in their reasons why. Waller talked about making improvements for the state while Reeves spoke about his opponents.

“There’s only one true conservative running for governor of Mississippi this year. Judge Waller agreed with Democratic Attorney General Jim Hood. They both want to raise the gas tax in Mississippi which will cost Mississippi families $500 per family,” Reeves said.

“I’m the pragmatic, active conservative who wants to make changes. The status quo is not going to get us anywhere,” Waller said. “We need to repair the existing roads. One of the first projects, I’d like 55 to be six lanes to Hernando.”

But there’s also another issue and it doesn’t have to do with policy.

“I want people to know they need to get out and vote. Your vote is your voice,” said Dale Thompson, DeSoto County Circuit Clerk.

Thompson worried they’d only had 300 people vote absentee in the last week, so she’s extremely concerned about turnout in this runoff election.

“They’ll see voting and say, ‘I didn’t even know we could vote. What election is it?’ that sort of thing,” she said.

Other statewide runoff elections include attorney general and transportation commissioner.

“If you don’t vote you don’t have a say and you’re allowing someone else to make decision for you,” Thompson said.

She said about 25% of DeSoto County voters came out in the primary. She knows they won’t get close to that in the runoff but hopes more people will come out.

If you want to vote early, the DeSoto County courthouse will be open from 8 to noon on Saturday. Otherwise, polls on Tuesday will be open at your regular polling place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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