Ohio Governor, and presidential candidate, John Kasich, is getting acquainted with Republicans in the Magnolia State. He is endorsed by almost 20 Republican officials, including, U.S. Representative Gregg Harper, former U.S Senator Trent Lott, and long-time state GOP leader Andy Taggart.
In a visit to Mississippi College, Kasich talked about how major Mississippi endorsements could give him a boost in the South.
"I've been to Mississippi so many times in my life, so I'm really comfortable. We feel very good. Between Gregg Harper and Trent Lott, we've been able to break out in the early primary states. At some point we will get to the SEC primary, and that's why we're on the ballot in all of these states now. It's real," Kasich says.
Nathan Shrader is a political science professor at Millsaps College who says Mississippi could play a role nationally.
"You hear a lot about New Hampshire, you hear a lot about Iowa, you hear a lot about South Carolina and the early states. Mississippi, just like those other states, is valuable to campaigning because they award delegates. This is why Mississippi's Republican and Democratic primary elections next year are going to be important. Their delegates of the national convention count just as much as Iowa's," says Shrader.
Shrader says Kasich's growing support in Mississippi could benefit him come election time.