Financing Overshadows Lt. Gov. Race

Prominent Gulf Coast attorney Richard "Dickie" Scruggs has confirmed that he backed $510,000 in loans for Lt. Gov. Amy Tuck's 1999 campaign.

The Jackson clarion ledger broke the story, after obtaining a copy of a letter Scruggs wrote to Tuck's attorney, noting partial repayment of the personal loan.

One of Tuck's opponents, State Sen. Barbara Blackmon, campaigned in Meridian Wednesday.

The attorney from Canton talked about what she hopes to do in state government if elected. But she also talked about campaign financing.

On the Tuck issue, Blackmon said she endorses full disclosure by all candidates.

"I'm glad that it was disclosed as to whom was the source of the funds, because I believe that in state government, the citizens have the right to know who is providing campaign contributions, whether it's directly or indirectly," said Blackmon. "And the citizens have the right to know who is influencing the outcome of elections. I plan to at some point in time to borrow funds. And I plan to disclose the source of the borrowing."

Whether campaign financing will be a major issue in this election year remains to be seen. It's just over a month before the primaries on Aug. 5 and just over four months until the Nov. 4 general election.


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