by Hunter Dawkins
Pretty conventional election day for the incumbents and top challengers in both Mississippi political party primaries Tuesday. After the numbers were tallied at 7pm, the current U.S. President Donald J. Trump comfortably won the Republican primary again for a second term with a convincing 98.6% ballots cast or over 240,000 votes earning all 40 delegates.
Four years ago, Trump easily was victorious of the Mississippi Republican primary with nearly 200,000 votes, but only earned 25 delegates compared to his opponent, current U.S. Senator Ted Cruz from Texas who earned 15 delegates.
Former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden collected a significant amount of votes for the Mississippi Democratic Primary in the 2020 United States Presidential election with well over 210,000 votes. Biden earned 31 of the delegate votes, while opponent U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont gained only 2 delegates as just under 40,000 votes were cast for him.
“We have 36 delegates out there that get elected based on the votes a candidate gets,” noted Mississippi Democratic Party Chairman Bobby Moak. Five Mississippians are considered super-delegates and can vote however they want at the national convention for the Mississippi Democrats.
In the U.S. Senate race, both primaries finished setting up the second showdown between incumbent Cindy Hyde-Smith and Democratic nominee, former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Mike Espy. After Hyde Smith was appointed by former Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant in 2018 to fill the vacancy left of long-time U.S. Senator Thad Cochran, she easily beat Espy in the general election 53.6%-46.4% or 486,000 plus votes to 420,000 plus votes to fill the last two years.
Former Secretary Espy earned over 93% of the vote or 245,000 plus ballots cast against challengers Tobey Bartee and Jensen Bohren.
Finally, the U.S. Fourth Congressional District of Mississippi was rumored to be a potential slugfest. Current incumbent Steven Palazzo (R-Biloxi) won his sixth term election comfortably, picking up over 54,000 votes and beating three opponents with 66.8% of the total. Biloxi City Councilman Robert Deming was the closest vote count with more than 11,000 ballots cast or 14.1%. Carl Boyanton of Diamondhead and Samuel Hickman of Pearl River County grabbed the rest of the vote count.
According to the Harrison County Circuit Clerk’s Office, only 29,085 votes were cast out 132,845 registered voters or 21.8% of the voters. The DeLisle precinct had the largest per capita ballot cast with 606 people that voted or 31.73%. Additionally, West Pass Christian, East Pass Christian, West Long Beach, Long Beach 5 & 6 all had the higher percentages in the county with over 26% ballots cast.