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Republicans Dominate State, What It Means For Democrats

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Republicans Dominate State, What It Means For Democrats
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A Mother With Her Four Children Waiting to Vote in Ridgeland
AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis

Mississippi Republicans are strengthening their dominance by winning all all eight statewide elected offices in Tuesday's election. MPB's Desare Frazier takes a look at what it means for Democrats.

Mississippi's election results shows there are red counties that are majority white and voted Republican in Tuesday's election and blue counties that are predominantly black and voted Democrat. Professor D'Andra Orey is with Jackson State University. He says there are more red counties, so in the governor's race Republican Lt. Governor Tate Reeves garnered more votes than Democratic Attorney General Jim Hood. Orey says there's a racial divide in Mississippi politics.

"Majority white counties went red for Reeves and there were four counties that went to Hood. Two of them were in college counties which were Mississippi State and the University of Mississippi and two of them were almost evenly divided with African Americans and white so this is about as racially as polarized of an election that we can see here in the state," said Orey.

Orey says Hood campaigned as a moderate hoping to gain the support of more white voters, but it didn't work. He says to win statewide office Democrats should put forth progressive candidates and aggressively pursue black voters because of their loyalty to the party. He says progressive whites will vote Democrat as well. State Republican Party Chair Lucien Smith says their conservative values resonate with voters, that's why they won statewide elections. He says they hope to draw blacks to the party and recently held an event in Jackson.

"The national outreach director spoke and it was a packed house of African Americans. Some of them were affirmative public Republicans. Some of them conservatives who were interested in the party and some of them were folks who showed up to listen and I think you're going to see a lot more of that," said Smith.

Republicans also hold a super majority in the Mississippi House and Senate.