The Early Fate Of Party Switchers
Since 2007, six House Democrats, one Senate Democrat, and Central District Public Service Commissioner Lynn Posey have changed parties. During the 2003-2007 period of party switchers, Democrats did a pretty good job of knocking off a couple Republican converts in 2007. It’s natural to put some extra effort into defeating those who have changed parties, but early information shows that the new Republicans might be in better shape this November.
Here’s a look at where they currently stand.
– Lynn Posey has drawn a primary challenge from Charles Barbour. This sets up a rematch of the 2007 general election when Barbour was the GOP nominee and Posey the Democratic nominee. This is pretty similar to the agriculture commissioner battles between Lester Spell and Max Phillips in 2003 and 2007. Spell, as a Democrat, defeated Phillips in 2003. By 2007, Spell had changed parties and he would meet Phillips in the primary that time around, again winning.
So far, however, no Democrat has qualified with less than two weeks to the qualifying deadline meaning the Posey-Barbour match will likely decide the election.
– Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith is running for commissioner of agriculture and commerce after changing parties. So far, Republican Bill Boerner is the lone qualifier for her old Senate seat.
– In the House, Representative Russ Nowell, Margaret Rogers, Scott Bounds, and Sid Bondurant have failed to draw primary or general election opponents at this time.
– Rep. Billy Nicholson has opted against a re-election run, with two Republicans and no Democrats qualified for his seat.
– Rep. Bobby Shows is the lone switcher to have drawn a Democratic opponent at this point. Jerdon Welborn is the first to qualify. Shows, first elected in 1992, should have little re-election trouble in a district that is very strong Republicans at the statewide level. Haley Barbour won it with about 69 percent of the vote.