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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Reeves leads in Mississippi governor’s race

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves speaks on COVID-19 testing in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, D.C. on September 28, 2020. (Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images/TNS)  (MANDEL NGAN)
Biloxi Sun Herald staff report

BILOXI, Miss. — A surprisingly strong turnout was seen across parts of Mississippi Tuesday as voters lined up to elect a governor and other state and county officials.

By late evening Tuesday, the race for governor had narrowed slightly, and with 85% of the vote counted, incumbent Republican Gov. Tate Reeves had a 52% to 46% lead over Democratic challenger Brandon Presley.

All the other top state officials easily won another term. Charles Busby won election as the new Southern District Transportation Commissioner, and there were no upsets for Mississippi Senate and House races on the Coast.

Republican Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann won a second term by defeating a Democratic challenger who had spent little money, business consultant D. Ryan Grover, according to Associated Press. In a contentious Republican primary in August, Hosemann defeated state Sen. Chris McDaniel.

Hosemann said at his election night watch party that over the next four years, “Our view is toward the next generation, not the next election. We are ready to meet head on the challenges our state will face in workforce development, the economy, healthcare, and other areas. And we will face them with solutions which create a culture of opportunity for all Mississippians.”

Republican Attorney General Lynn Fitch, whose office led the legal fight to overturn Roe v. Wade and change abortion access, won a second term by defeating Democrat Greta Kemp Martin, an attorney for Disability Rights Mississippi.

The polls closed at 7 p.m. across the state, except in Hinds County, where a shortage of ballots prompted a court order to allow voting until 8 p.m. Secretary of State Michael Watson said counties are required to print ballots for 60% of the active voter count and county officials then decide how to distribute ballots among precincts.