Shaping the Future of Mississippi

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JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) — Mississippi will fly a new flag and have a new method of voting for statewide offices. 

Mississippi was the only state with an electoral college type of voting process for electing statewide positions like governor, attorney general and secretary of state.

Mississippi voters have never elected a Black candidate to statewide office, despite having one of the largest proportional Black population of any U.S. state. 

After this election, the chances of that happening has increased tremendously with the adoption of House concurrent resolution number 47, which changes the process so that to win a statewide office, all you need is majority vote.

The original method was designed during the Jim Crow-era to eliminate minority voters and uphold white power in politics.

“If you had an African-American who ran at the time and was able to secure majority of the popular vote, they would never get the votes in the Mississippi house of representatives,” said Senate Minority Leader Derrick T. Simmons.

Also on the 2020 ballot, was the new state flag design. Mississippians voted in favor of the “In God We Trust” flag.

Choctaw Tribal Chief Cyrus Ben, one of the state flag commissioners, said he was unsure as to how the state would react.  

“It was a lot of optimism going to election day. And, of course, when the results were coming in on Tuesday evening, it was a great joy to be able to see the state embrace this.”

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