Archive for the ‘Events of Note’ Category

“J.P.’s The Man” & more campaign songs

Friday, November 1st, 2013

I’ve added to my collection of campaign albums of which I’ve mainly focused on Mississippi campaigns. So I’m excited to have added “JP’s The Man” from J.P. Coleman. Coleman served in the MS House of Representatives, as a circuit court judge, on the Mississippi Supreme Court, as MS Attorney General, MS Governor and as a justice on the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. He ran for governor twice: successfully in 1955, and unsuccessfully in 1963.

“J.P.’s The Man” was written and performed by Mississippian Jimmy Gilreath who saw some commercial success as a singer and songwriter. Per Wikipedia, in 1963, he released “Little Band of Gold” on Statue Records of Tupelo, Mississippi. It reached #21 on the U.S. pop chart and #19 on the R&B chart and #29 on the UK Singles Chart and was covered by Whispering Bill Anderson, Vince Hill, Boots Randolph, The Hep Stars, The Tennessee Guitars, Paul Martin and was #5 hit on the country music chart in 1975 for Sonny James. Gilreath’s “Why Not Tonight” reached #5 on the R&B charts for Jimmy Hughes in 1967.

From Alabama comes “Bill Baxley Theme (He Is The Man Bill Baxley)” and “I’ll Fly Away” (on which the candidate Bill Baxley sings) from Baxley’s 1978 gubernatorial campaign. Baxley was elected Attorney General at age 27 and served two terms before running for governor in 1978. He lost but was elected lieutenant governor in 1982. Baxley was an aggressive prosecutor of the Ku Klux Klan. The record was pressed by Break Time Music and the songs performed by Lower Forty Grass.

George Wallace, Governor of Alabama, ran for President of the United states in 1968 on the American Independent Party ticket. This album pressed by Red White & Blue Records of Fort Worth, Texas, features the “Wallace Cannonball” and the “American Party Song” both performed by Chuck Aherns & The Cannonballs. You know you have a problem when your campaign song has the words “a racist he is not” as one of the lines.

Jan McCall performed “Let’s Carry Barry to the White House” on this 1964 presidential campaign album pressed by RJM Records of Los Angeles, California for Republican Barry Goldwater. Here is some background from McCall on how the song came about. Also, the Library of Congress has this archive of other presidential songs.

Here are some previous posts with other historic campaign songs.

Speaker Gunn’s “Ideas Tour”

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

Speaker of the House Philip Gunn is hosting his second statewide “Mississippi Solutions - an Ideas Tour” next month hitting Clinton, Clarksdale, Olive Branch, Oxford, Corinth, Starkville, Vicksburg, Natchez, Laurel and Pascagoula.

From his press release:

Mississippi Solutions—an Ideas Tour is a non-partisan town hall style meeting for all Legislators, citizens and the press.

“The purpose of these meetings is to get into communities and hear ideas Mississippians have for improving our State,” said Speaker Gunn. “Last year, we received an overwhelmingly positive response. A variety of people from all different backgrounds attended these meetings and shared some of their biggest concerns and opinions regarding core issues most Mississippians grapple with daily.

“This year, I want to focus on how we can fix those problems,” he continued. “We hope to collect a lot of good information. However, we expect those who come to these meetings to tell us how they think these problems need to be solved. Let me know how you think your elected officials should be solving the issues that matter the most to you.”

Each meeting will last one hour.


Speaker Philip Gunn

MS Ideas Tour

October 7-10, 2013

Monday, October 7

8:00 a.m.—Clinton, Clinton Municipal Court

Address: 305 Monroe Street, Clinton, 39056

1:00 p.m.—Clarksdale, City Council Chambers

Address: 121 Sunflower Ave., Clarksdale, 38614

5:30 p.m.—Olive Branch, Municipal Court building (behind City Hall)

Address: 6900 Highland St., Olive Branch, 38654

Tuesday, October 8

9:00 a.m.—Oxford, Oxford Conference Center

Address: 102 Ed Perry Blvd., Oxford, MS, 38655

1:00 p.m.—Corinth, City Hall

Address: 300 Childs Street, Corinth, 38834

5:30 p.m.—Starkville, Hunter Henry Center, Mississippi State University (MSU)

Address: 1 Hunter Henry Blvd., MSU, 39762

Wednesday, October 9

9:00 a.m.—Vicksburg, Vicksburg Convention Center, Meeting Room 1

Address: 1600 Mulberry Street, Vicksburg, 39183

5:30 p.m. Natchez, Natchez Convention Center, Room TBD

Address: 211 Main Street, Natchez, 39120

Thursday, October 10

8:00 a.m.—Laurel, Train Depot

Address: 230 North Maple St., Laurel

1:00 p.m.—Pascagoula, The Grand Magnolia

Address: 3604 Magnolia Street, Pascagoula, 39567

Josiah Coleman sworn in to Mississippi Supreme Court

Monday, January 7th, 2013

I enjoyed the swearing in ceremony today as Justices Michael Randolph and Leslie King returned to the Mississippi Supreme Court and Josiah Coleman was sworn in as the newest justice.  His formal investiture will be in Oxford later and the other justices, keeping with tradition, won’t partake in additional investitures.

(Justice Bill Waller, who performed the swearing-in ceremonies, was also reelected last year but was not sworn in during the ceremony today.  I’m sure there is some reason of protocol concerning the Mississippi Chief Justice that explains why.  Considering he is the first Chief Justice in at least twenty years to be reelected to retain his position, there may be a special ceremony for him. Due to the way the seat rotations and election years fall, Waller takes office on his new term in January 2014 and will be sworn in then.)

Here is the Court’s press release on the event.

Thomas Coleman, father of Josiah, served on the Mississippi Court of Appeals.  J.P. Coleman, Josiah’s grandfather, served as Mississippi Governor and Attorney General, served on the Mississippi Supreme Court and in the Mississippi legislature, and served on the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Here is a picture of Josiah - now Justice Coleman - with his wife Ashleigh and the administering of the Oath by Chief Justice Bill Waller, Jr.

MCPP To Reveal How Tax Dollars are Spent by County Governments

Monday, September 12th, 2011

The Mississippi Center for Public Policy has announced a press conference to introduce an expansion of its web site that will put all county government spending online for Mississippians to examine. Previously, their data provided detailed search capacity by vendor, account, or agency for the State of Mississippi for review. Here are details of the press conference:

Mississippi Center for Public Policy Puts County Spending Details Online for the Public
Who: Mississippi Center for Public Policy, an independent, non-profit think tank
What: News Conference to Present Addition of County Spending Data to MCPP’s
Spending Transparency Website,
Where: MCPP Offices, 520 George Street, Jackson, MS 39202
(park in adjacent parking lot)
When: 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Why: Demonstrate how the web site works and answer questions about the data
Details: For the first time ever, Mississippians will be able to see online exactly how county governments spend their money – even down to the transaction level. Mississippi Center for Public Policy’s transparency website,, which currently features a searchable database of state spending, will be updated on Tuesday to include spending by 62 of Mississippi’s 82 counties. Join us to learn more about the site, its features, and the benefits to the media and the public.

This is great news for citizens interested in how their tax dollars are spent, reporters, bloggers, campaigns, vendors who want to compete in government contracts, and elected officials concerned about over spending.

Attorney General’s staff used nonprofit luncheon with Jim Hood to solicit campaign contributions

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

I attended the economic development luncheon Monday sponsored by the 100 Black Men of Jackson where Attorney General Jim Hood spoke. The Jackson Free Press was the only media (I noticed) in the room and Adam Lynch wrote about Hood’s answer to a question on the health care lawsuit: “Hood: Don’t Waste Resources on Health-Care Suit.” Majority in Mississippi and the Mississippi Democratic Party both blogged on that story as well.

There were a few other interesting items from the luncheon I thought I’d share as the focus appears to be only on his health care comments.

It was your typical luncheon with good food and good people held at the University Club in Jackson. Everyone introduced themselves and the talk began. Special Assistant Attorney General Deshun T. Martin introduced Attorney General Jim Hood. Martin said you judge a man by his actions not his words and praised three efforts by Hood: his successful prosecution in the Killen Trial in Neshoba County, his efforts at combating cyber-crime, and his lobbying for the 2007 Comprehensive Crystal Meth Reduction Act (which he claims that MBN numbers show led to a 70% reduction in meth crimes).

(On a side note, Martin was praised by several people there as a top notch attorney; I had not met him before. One of his brothers, Precious Martin, has a long relationship with Hood as well. Precious has contributed thousands to his campaign, has served as President of the Mississippi Association for Justice - the new name of the Mississippi Trial Lawyers Association - and was one of the lead contingency fee contract attorneys for Hood in the state’s lawsuits against Microsoft and BASF.)

Hood gave a standard “this is what the Office of Attorney General does” speech. He noted that his office had sent guides to 2700 churches and 2500 organizations and nonprofits in the community explaining what his office does. He discussed domestic violence and cyber crimes.

He noted his office had increased the number of minority workers. He said when he started in 2003, 9% of lawyers in his office were black; 11% of investigators were black; and 31% of support staff were black. Now in 2010, those numbers had increased to 19% of his lawyers are black; 32% of his investigators are black; and 40% of his support staff are black. He said that only 9% of attorneys in Mississippi are black.

He finished up his speech telling the crowd that he would be going to Washington DC to testify before the House Judiciary Committee this week regarding oil spill litigation and his efforts at demanding transparency from BP. Then he took questions from the audience.

As Hood left the podium, Special Assistant Attorney General Deshun Martin stood up and kept Hood there. Martin said while Hood is a consummate prosecutor, he needed people like Martin to be the politicians for him. Martin stood next to Hood and told the group they needed to support Hood’s campaign by contributing and they could contact Martin at the Attorney General’s Office or send him a check.

To be fair, Hood seemed a little embarrased by this. I’m unaware of state laws that prohibit state employees from soliciting campaign contributions for their employers and instructing those interested to contact him at the state office to do so. I know if he had been a federal official, this would be major trouble. As it is, while it smells bad, it might turn out to be fine and legal. (It could be there is a violation of § 23-15-871, but an attorney would know better.)

As the luncheon wound down, J.R. Jones stood up at the podium to wrap up the event and said thank-you to Hood and Martin and said that supporting campaigns are important and that they all need to “learn we must pay to play.”

Then former Seventh Judicial District Circuit Court Judge Robert Gibbs, now an attorney for the Brunini Law Firm, stood up and said that Hood provides some of the best leadership for Democrats in Mississippi and the group should certainly support him, but that those present should also seek out additional good Democrats to support in upcoming statewide elections.

I thought while others were writing/blogging about the luncheon, I’d throw my notes into the mix as well. I believe Adam Lynch with the Jackson Free Press might have video of the luncheon. If so, he would be better able to give precise quotes on what all was said to anyone interested.

Gingrich at Rankin Republican Fundraiser

Tuesday, December 1st, 2009

The Rankin County Republican Party is hosting Newt Gingrich at a fundraiser Thursday night. I’ve posted the details below, but I decided to dig out this old photo of a previous visit Newt paid to the Magnolia State.

Governor Kirk Fordice introduces Speaker of the House Newt Ginrich on the South Steps of the Mississippi Capitol in 1996

Governor Kirk Fordice introduces Speaker of the House Newt Ginrich on the South Steps of the Mississippi Capitol in 1996

Here are Thursday night’s details.

Chairman Gary Harkins and the Members of the Rankin County Republican Executive Committee Cordially invite you to The 18th Annual Rankin County Banquet Honoring Congressman Gregg Harper With Special Guest The Honorable Newt Gingrich, Former Speaker, United States House of Representatives
Date: December 3, 2009
Time: Reception 6:00 pm; Banquet 7:00 pm
Location: Jackson Marriott Hotel, 200 East Amite Street, Jackson, Mississippi
Banquet: Individual tickets $125.00 per person; Table of Ten (10) $1,000.00;
With full table purchase you also receive 2 complimentary reception tickets.
Reception: $125 per person; personally visit with Speaker Gingrich, Congressman Harper, and many other Mississippi dignitaries, Republican Party officials and friends.
Please make checks payable to RCREC (Rankin County Republican Executive Committee) and mail to:
RCREC Chairman Gary Harkins, 4 River Bend Place, Suite 110, Flowood, Mississippi 39232.
For more information contact:
Jim Cooper 601 594-2742 or or Gary Harkins 601-932-4663 or

Healthcare & Energy Small Business Forum

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009

Governor Haley Barbour is hosting a Small Business Forum focusing on “Healthcare & Energy for Small Businesses.” The forum is sponsored by the Mississippi Manufacturers Association, the National Federation of Independent Business, and the Mississippi Economic Council.

September 15, 2009
Jackson Convention Complex
1:30pm - 4:30pm
RSVP: or 601-359-3150

RGA: Fight for Freedom Call

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

The Republican Governors Association is sponsoring a “Fight for Freedom Call” Thursday night with Governor Rick Perry of Texas and Governor Mark Sanford of South Carolina.  Their concept is to conduct a Tele-Tea Party and they expect 30,000 participants. reports on the event: GOP govs plan Tea Party sequel.

You can sign-up to participate in the Thursday night call (May 14 at 7:30pm central time) at

The initiative is part of the Republican Governors Association plan that “the GOP comeback begins with Republican governors.”

UPDATE: South Carolina Mark Sanford was on Greta Van Susteren last night talking about Tea Party 2.0.

Mississippi Republicans Honor Yerger

Monday, May 11th, 2009

The Mississippi Republican Partywill be honoring their founding chairman and now Chairman Emeritus Wirt Yerger. Tomorrow, the Mississippi Republican State Central Committee, Governor Barbour, Lieutenant Governor Bryant, legislators and more will gather at GOP HQ for their quarterly meeting and to honor Yerger.

Then tomorrow night at the Jackson Marriott, a thousand Republicans including all the statewide Republican elected officials, all the living former Mississippi Republican chairmen, legislators, county chairmen, and GOP pioneers will gather at the Jackson Mariott for a dinner recognizing and honoring Yerger’s life and service.

30 New Jobs in Noxubee County

Monday, April 13th, 2009

The Noxubee Alliance and Thomasson Company will host a ribbon cutting and grand opening for the new Macon Treating Company Tuesday at 10am at 14877 Hwy. 45 in Macon.  Macon Treating Company, along with sister company East Mississippi Pole Company, represents a total investment of $6 million and approximately 30 new jobs in Noxubee County. The public is invited.

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