How Significant Are Mississippi's Primaries?

By: Lindsey Brown Email
By: Lindsey Brown Email

For many, Super Tuesday was exciting to watch, especially for those interested in politics like political analyst Dr. Kathy Baxter.

While exciting, Super Tuesday still left both the Republican and Democratic nominations far from decided.

And with just over a month until Mississippi's Mar. 11 primaries, some question if Mississippi voters could play a larger role in the process than originally thought? Dr. Baxter says no.

"If it comes down to the end and they are neck to neck, and we are march 10, can Mississippi make a difference? No," she said.

During Tuesday's primaries, the four-man republican race got further along with John McCain taking a decent lead. However the Democratic race between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama only heated up, with Clinton taking just a slight lead.

Regardless of how Mississippi voters cast ballots on the Democratic side, Baxter says they only offer a fraction of the delegates that bigger states like Texas, Ohio and Virginia will offer in the coming weeks.

"The Democrats, however, are in a state of flux because the two main candidates are so close because of the matter of delegates and because of the factor of superdelegates," said Baxter. "This campaign on the Democrat side should go on through the summer."

The superdelegates that Democratic candidates get can change their minds come the Democratic National Convention and completely alter the course of the nomination.

On the Republican side, McCain has been criticized by some fellow Republicans for not being conservative enough,. Baxter said she doesn't think this will stop the party from nominating him, and actually sees one question left to answer.

"Winning begets winning on the Republican side. The only question that hasn't been answered is who will be McCain's running mate. It could be Mike Huckabee, who had a strong showing Tuesday.

Baxter says Mike Huckabee actually stands a good chance of winning Mississippi.

Voters who want to participate in the primaries will have to be registered no later than this week.

The deadline is Friday at 5 p.m. in some circuit clerk offices around the state. Lauderdale County circuit clerk, Donna Jill Johnson, will have her office open Saturday from 8 a.m. to 12 noon for the convenience of those who can't come in during weekdays.

Not all circuit clerk offices in Mississippi will be open Saturday. You should call the clerk in your county to find out if Saturday registration is possible.


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