Governor Phil Bryant officially announced his endorsement in the race for governor and it could possibly tilt the Republican primary.
The endorsement didn’t come as a huge surprise.
Lt. Governor Tate Reeves is considered the leading contender on the Republican side and a nod from the current governor could give him a boost.
“I think he’ll do an excellent job as Governor that’s why I’m supporting Tate Reeves for the next Governor, “ Bryant said.
Governor Bryant made the announcement exclusively to Y’all Politics and says he’s returning Reeves loyalty.
“If a governor and a lieutenant governor cannot work closely together if I cannot be loyal to him as well as he has been loyal to me — then we’re on the wrong path,” the popular two-term Governor said.
In an exclusive interview with Tate Reeves he said he welcomes the endorsement.
“I’m honored to receive Governor Bryant’s endorsement and I look forward to getting on the campaign trail and earning the endorsement of all of my Mississippi constituents,” Reeves said. “The fact of the matter is Governor Bryant has been a conservative leader for many years.”
Reeves added the Governor’s support will go a long way to help unify the party.
“We’ve literally had hundreds of elected officials and party leaders endorse our campaign, but to have the leader of your party Governor Bryant who is well liked by so many people from across Mississippi to stand up today and say Tate Reeves is the right choice for Governor means an awful lot to me personally and an awful lot to our campaign,” Reeves said.
Reeves is currently polling behind Democratic front-runner Jim Hood by a couple points in a recent survey by Mason-Dixon
Hood’s campaign had no comment.
Reeves will take on state Representative Robert Foster .
Former Mississippi Chief Justice Bill Waller Jr. is expected to join the race.
Valesha Williams is running against Hood on the Democratic side.
The primary election is August 6th with the general election on November 5th.
Governor Phil Bryant says Lt. Governor Tate Reeves has his full support in his quest to succeed Bryant.
The Governor says once he makes a decision like this he is ‘all in’. Bryant confirmed the announcement with WJTV 12.
Here is video on the ‘Ya’ll Politics’ website announcing the decision.
Just last week, former Supreme Court Chief Justice Bill Waller confirmed he will file qualifying papers in the race, potentially splitting the vote among Republicans in this race and other down-ticket slots.
Reeves is calling on the party to unite.
Republican Representative Robert Foster, Democrats Attorney General Jim Hood and Velesha Williams have also qualified to run.