New Blog

This blog and the Third District Blog will be combining into a new Mississippi Congress Blog that will post on all four districts. All old posts and comments will be moved as well.


Davis Running Again....For Mayor

Southaven Mayor Greg Davis made his bid for re-election official on Thursday, setting the stage for a three-way showdown for the city's top post.

Local businessman and Republican Mitch Wright qualified in early January to seek the mayor's seat and will appear with Davis on primary election ballots on May 5.

The winner of that race will then face recent college grad William Forrester, a Democrat, in the June 2 general election.


Conservative Divide: Childers-Thompson / Harper-Taylor

In the first defining vote of the year, Bennie Thompson (D) and Travis Childers (D) voted for the trillion dollar deficit stimulus package; Gene Taylor (D) and Gregg Harper (R) voted against it. Zero Republicans in the House of Representatives voted for H.R. 1, and 11 conservative Democrats joined the GOP in voting against it.

Taylor had some choice words on Obama's trillion dollar deficit, "President Obama ran on change. This isn't change. George Bush during the height of the war cut taxes, increased spending, doubled the national debt on his watch. And this is just more of the same, in my opinion...This is nuts."

Childers said he "teetered" with his vote, "Here's what just pushed me I guess, and I don't mind telling you, I really kind of teetered for the last couple of days on this. But this is what just finally made me vote for it. Number one, it's not a finished product. It goes over to the Senate. I hope they can take the bill and perfect it. I hope they can make it better at least."

Harper was more direct, "I wish Congress would open their eyes to the wasteful government spending that is contained in this bill and that will drive the country further into debt. The American people know we cannot borrow and spend our way back to prosperity."


Childers takes party line vote on S-CHIP

Childers goes with spenders over Barbour and GOP on S-CHIP

Gov. Haley Barbour at an afternoon news conference today spoke out against Congress’ plan to expand the State Children’s Insurance Program, saying that it’s unfair to poorer states like Mississippi.

“I urge our senators to vote against it unless its discrimination against the needy children of our state is corrected,” Barbour said.

Democratic Reps. Travis Childers of the 1st District, Bennie Thompson of the 2nd District and Gene Taylor of the 4th District voted for the reauthorization of the program. Third District Rep. Gregg Harper voted against it.

Childers, D-Booneville, held a news conference this morning at North Mississippi Pediatrics in Tupelo to discuss the issue.

“During these tough economic times, more and more hard working Americans are losing their jobs, and parents are struggling to provide heath care coverage for their children,” Childers said in a news release. “Too many of Mississippi’s children lack health insurance. Without the reauthorization of SCHIP, Mississippi would face significant funding shortfalls and would be forced to drop children from coverage.”

“Covering our children now means hard working taxpayers won’t have to foot the bill for more costly problems in the future,” he said.

But Barbour said no child in Mississippi has been turned away by the program before, despite inadequate funding from the federal government.

“If it were about health care for poor children, the bill would not shortchange the poor children of Mississippi by tens of millions of dollars,” Barbour said.

Barbour worries that the expansion of the program will create a system that gives funding to wealthier families in other states before the needs of poorer Mississippi families are met, he said.

“It is critical Mississippi’s poor children be provided for before children in New York and New Jersey, whose families make $65,000 or, in some cases, even $88,000 a year,” he said.


Pay Raise, Rahm Emanuel

Childers opposed to congressional pay raise this year - "I just think this is a bad moment for us to take a pay raise," said 1st District Rep. Travis Childers, a Democrat. "I'm not opposed to a pay raise. I'm just opposed to one this year."

Childers' friend in high places - Wiseman also noted freshman Democratic Rep. Travis Childers, “from what I understand, made a very close friend during his first few days in office — Rahm Emanuel,” now Obama’s chief of staff.