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Monday, April 15, 2024

Mississippi GOP Picks Candidate to Challenge Unethical J6 Committee Chair

'It's time to put that party nonsense behind us. We need to work as a people and a nation together...'

(Headline USA) Ron Eller won a Republican primary runoff Tuesday in Mississippi’s 2nd Congressional District and will face longtime Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson in the Nov. 5 general election.

Eller, who is a military veteran and physician assistant, defeated Andrew Scott Smith, who has worked in farming and commercial real estate. They had advanced to the Republican runoff as the top candidates in a three-person primary March 12.

After winning the runoff Tuesday, Eller told the Associated Press that he believes all Americans want good places to raise their families, with strong schools and clean air and water.

“It’s time to put that party nonsense behind us,” Eller said. “We need to work as a people and a nation together.”

The race also gives Republicans in the red state an opportunity to exact revenge on the ethically challenged Thompson, the former chair of the Nancy Pelosi-led House’s partisan Jan. 6 Committee.

The heavily produced and televised inquisitions helped support the stunning federal prosecutions of more than 1,000 political dissidents who peacefully protested inside the U.S. Capitol in opposition to the congressional certification of Democrat Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory.

Since retaking the House majority, Republicans, led by Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga., have exposed flagrant abuses and attempts by the J6 committee to cover its tracks while cherrypicking data.

Thompson attempted to delete several terrabytes of data and grossly violated protocol by refusing to give GOP leaders the encryption codes to other materials, which ultimately painted a damning picture of how the committee coached so-called star witness Cassidy Hutchinson and others to lie on the stand and refused to release the ample testimony from private depositions that contradicted their predetermined claims.

It is unclear to what extent Eller will campaign on Thompson’s corrupt track-record, however, as he likely faces an uphill battle to win voters in the majority-black district.

The district stretches along the Mississippi River on the western side of the state, through the flatlands of the Delta and into the capital of Jackson.

Thompson has represented the district since winning a special election in 1993.

Voters in the 2nd District supported Democrat Joe Biden over Republican Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election, 63% to 36%.

However, former President Donald Trump, the presumptive GOP nominee, has stunned many with the remarkable inroads he has made within the black community, and he is likely to select a black man as his running mate. Former HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina and Rep. Byron Donalds of Florida are all top contenders.

Eller may be able to sway the electorate by hitching his own wagon to the Trump Train while seeking to hammer home Thompson’s stature as a party-line Biden Democrat who represents the interests of wealthy elites over the working class.

Thompson, the ranking Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee, was unopposed for his party’s nomination in the district this year. He has claimed he wants to decrease prescription drug costs, invest in historically black colleges and universities (an issue that Trump previously acted upon), reduce student loan debt and build the middle class “by making sure the wealthy pay their fair share.”

Biden’s student-loan amnesty program in particular could be a vulnerability among working-class blacks if Eller can make the case that it benefited wealthy college attendees while forcing those who opted not to attend—or were unable to attend college—to foot the bill.

The Biden administration’s open-border policies have also become a touchy topic among black voters who see illegals sapping both government resources and blue-collar employment from America’s own financially destitute population.

Eller, who ran unsuccessfully for the 2nd District Republican nomination in 2022, has said he supports construction of a U.S.–Mexico border wall and expansion of domestic energy production, two of Trump’s top priorities.

Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press

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