HATTIESBURG, Miss (WJTV) - Attorney General Jim Hood took part in a town hall on the campus of the University of Southern Mississippi hosted by their College Democrats.
The leading Democratic contender for the Governor‘s office took to the Pine Belt to spread his campaign message.
“It’s an area that likes public education and many of the issues that I support people down here support,” Hood said.
He’s calling out state leaders including Lt. Governor Tate Reeves on using teacher pay as election year politics.
“It happens in an election year people they get religion — you know we need people to go to church more frequently than just right here in an election year," he said. "So those that are talking about education you know they hadn’t done anything to help it.”
Hood has committed to a teacher pay increase until the Southeastern average is met.
“I think we ought to do it every year until we get to the Southeastern average --is to commit to pay our teachers for all the things that they put up with .”
Some of his message to the crowd was on criminal justice reform, the economy, infrastructure and healthcare
“Building roads is an easy one I think the votes have been in the legislature to do that," the AG said. "I think we should take $1 billion dollars from the federal government to keep our rural hospitals open and I know the people here want to make sure that we have good healthcare .”
Hood also addressed why Reeves has targeted him despite a Republican primary fight ahead of him.
“Obviously he’s been looking at the polls , he’s knows that the people in the state of Mississippi want change.”
Hood says Reeves is concerned.
“A lot of other critics they’re talking about things that are going on in Washington that has nothing to do with Mississippi and you know we’ve seen it historically when people try to scare voters usually people figure it out they know when somebody’s running scared,” Hood said
Hood is taking on 8 other candidates in the Democratic primary.
William Bond Compton Jr., Meridian
Robert J. Ray, Meridian
Robert Shuler Smith, Utica
Gregory Wash, Forest
Phillip West, Natchez
Velesha P. Williams, Flora
Albert Wilson, Jackson