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Two dozen political figures take the stage
by Zack Steen
Jul 04, 2014 | 82 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
With the historic Jacinto Courthouse in the foreground, more than two dozen political figures took to the makeshift stage on Friday at the annual Jacinto Festival.

Sen. Rita Potts Parks kicked off the speaking by asking those veterans and active military in the crowd to stand for recognition.

“We are able to celebrate the Fourth of July, because these men and women have defended our freedom,” Parks said. “We can never forget.”

Parks also mentioned some of her key items from the most recent legislative session.

“There would be nothing more fitting on the Fourth of July then mentioning the new law that will add 'In God We Trust' to Mississippi’s state seal,” she said. “Along with protecting gun owners and religious freedom laws.”

Mississippi Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley set the record straight on a few items on his agenda.

“Politicians get in hot water when they believe they own the office they sit in,” said Presley. “I want to make sure it’s clear, in my office we work for the people of Mississippi. Every citizen in this state owns the state government.”

Presley said his office has fought to ensure electric rates stay down in Mississippi.

“I have also fought to keep nuclear waste out of Mississippi," he said. "This state gets dumped on enough and we certainly don’t need more added to it.”

Candidate for United States Senate, Travis Childers said he was proud to be back at Jacinto.

“This place means a lot to me. Alcorn, Prentiss and Tishomingo Counties mean a lot to me and I’m proud of my heritage,” said Childers. “This is a mighty important seat that only comes along every six years. I am willing and able to do the job. I have a long history of working to solve problems, not create problems.”

Childers said he wants equal pay for equal work and to raise the minimum wage.

“I also want to see public education funded every year,” he said. “Not just election years.”

District 2 Rep. Nick Bain recalled three years ago when he gave his first political speech ever at the Jacinto Fourth of July Festival.

“Alcorn County and Jacinto is so interwoven into the fiber of my life that everywhere I go, Alcorn County is there,” Bain said. “That’s exactly how it is when I’m in Jackson. People in Jackson don’t tell me what Alcorn County needs, because I know what Alcorn County needs.”

With Corinth city elections a few months away, several candidates used Jacinto’s stage to remind those in the crowd to vote.

“Voting is one of greatest freedoms and everyone should know that every single vote counts,” said Corinth Mayor Tommy Irwin. “When I was first elected mayor, I ran on two issues - economic development and infrastructure. We’ve done a lot to improve both over the last four years.”

Irwin said if elected this year, he’ll continue to work hard to make Corinth a better place to live with more job opportunities in industry and retail.

“This is the first time I’ve ever been to Jacinto,” said Corinth Ward 4 Alderman J.C. Hill. “The hospitality here is unbelievable.”

Hill said he has been part of the great revitalization of the entire South Corinth area.

“Corinth is a city on the move and I hope the voters will continue to let me be a part of it,” he said.

Candidate for Corinth Alderman at Large Jennifer McCoy said she believes it is time for a few new things to be completed in Corinth.

“My specialty is neighborhood revitalization and community policing,” said McCoy. “I want to see Corinth not tear down old housing, but decide how those old places can be reused.”

McCoy said she has knowledge of HUD grants and other state programs that could be used to help fund neighborhood revitalization in the city.

(Comments from Corinth Chief of Police candidates Ralph Dance, Ben Gann and Fred Gooch will be presented in a story on Sunday.)
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