To hear Republicans tell it, Attorney General Jim Hood (pictured) won re-election due to unprecedented support in North Mississippi. Here is an article on the race on LegalNewsline.com, an anti-consumer site funded by Big Corporations.
The article quotes a baffled Rep. Philip Gunn, who will be the Speaker of the House in January:
So how did Hood hang on to his position as the state’s top lawyer?
"I really don’t know what people were thinking," Gunn said. "I don’t know why they would vote for him, to be honest."
Gunn, who was selected as the GOP’s preferred candidate for House speaker on Monday, said some of it probably comes down to location.
"Jim Hood has been a very popular candidate in the state," he admitted. In 2007, Hood easily defeated Republican Al Hopkins.
"But you have to know the dynamics," Gunn said.
Northeast Mississippi traditionally has been a Democratic stronghold, he explained.
"And that’s kind of his home base," Gunn said. "He has a lot of popularity there. The Northwest also is a solid Democratic base.
"Basically, in northern Mississippi he has home-field advantage."
The A.P. website shows vote results by county. General Hood “hung on” with a 180,000 vote win—61% of all votes. Hood “hung on” by taking 77 of 82 counties, including Steve Simpson’s home county (Harrison). Hood almost won Rankin County, losing it 51–49. If not for that pesky South Mississippi County of DeSoto (located just south of Memphis), Hood basically would have pitched a shut out. Hood’s appeal was state-wide and he did not win because of a landslide in North Mississippi. It was a state-wide landslide.
And let’s be honest, Steve Simpson is probably asking where Philip Gunn was before the election. I did not get the impression that state Republican leaders were lining up to stand in front of the Hood Train during the campaign.
General Hood stands up for regular people against big corporations. He banged on insurance companies after Katrina and BP after the Gulf Oil Spill. His office goes after perverts trying to commit cyber-crimes against children and people exploiting the elderly. Every day folks appreciate that about Hood. But Republicans politicians hate Hood for it because they have to listen to their big corporation supporters whine about Hood.
Look for the Republican war on Jim Hood to now shift to the legislature. Republicans want to either stop the State actions against big corporations that Hood has championed or prevent Hood from hiring the outside lawyers who take the cases. Republican Legislators would rather assign the cases to their supporters.
Republicans believe that if they can cut-off Hood’s power to hire outside counsel, then they can cut-off his campaign contributions and Republicans can take the A.G. position. That may have been the case 4 years ago, but at this point Hood is a force who will stay in the A.G. position for as long as he wants.