Archive for April, 2015

10 choices for Biloxi voters for mayor

Tuesday, April 28th, 2015

Voters in Biloxi go to the polls to elect the mayor of Mississippi’s fifth largest city today. If no candidate receives more than 50 percent of the vote, the top two candidates will meet in a run-off on May 12.

Ten candidates are running to fill the seat vacated by A.J. Holloway’s resignation in March:

· Victor Ainsworth

· David Bull

· Cono Caranna

· “FoFo” Gilich

· Felix O. Gines

· Kenny Glavan

· Pat Morris

· Dixie Newman

· W.S. “Windy” Swetman, III

· Paul Tisdale

From the Sun Herald’s coverage of the race:

The candidate list is one of the most diverse in Biloxi’s history and because it’s a special election, candidates don’t run as Republican or Democrat.

Four of the five council members first elected in 2013 are running:

· Gines, elected to the council on his third try, is in the Air National Guard.

· Glavan is manager of Sheraton Four Points hotel in Biloxi.

· Dixie Newman has rallied public and private support to revitalize Hiller Park.

· Paul Tisdale is former superintendent of Biloxi School District.

Two are current or former officials of Harrison County:

· Cono Caranna II, former district attorney, said he will serve the two-year term without pay.

· Windy Swetman III, a county supervisor, organized and opened a senior center in East Biloxi.

Several are business members in Biloxi:

· Victor Ainsworth ran against Fayard for council in 2013 and works for Swetman at Swetman Security.

· Bull owns Bernie’s Restaurant in Biloxi; he ran against Holloway in the last election.

· Andrew “FoFo” Gilich is a software engineer who has run against Holloway for mayor.

· Pat Morris was a member of former Gov. Haley Barbour’s and Holloway’s commissions after Hurricane Katrina and now is assistant to the director at Keesler’s Fisher House.

Legislature passes 4 suffrage bills

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

Today the Senate passed four restoration of suffrage bills already passed by the House.

Under the federal system, a legislation must be signed by the President to become law. Not signing it is called the pocket veto. Under Mississippi’s system, it is just the opposite: legislation becomes law unless the governor vetoes it. If he does nothing, it becomes law without him.

That is what has happened with the previous suffrage bills passed under Governor Phil Bryant: 1 in 2013 and 3 in 2014. Essentially, that makes these particular restoration of suffrage rights bills entirely an act of the legislature with the executive giving neither approval nor disapproval. (While Bryant served as Lt. Gov., 21 suffrage rights measures passed.)

I’ve looked at suffrage bills over the years, particularly interested in whether the uproar over former Governor Haley Barbour’s pardons impacted the introduction or approval of these measures (post from 2012 & post from 2013). Over the past 11 years, 90 Mississippians have had their suffrage rights restored by the legislature.

Here is a chart tracking the number of bills filed, the number of legislators making these requests and the number of bills approved from the 2004 session through the 2014 session. I haven’t added the 5 bills submitted, 4 legislators making requests and 4 bills pending approval from this year.

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