by Peyton Irby, Watkins Ludlam Winter & Stennis, P.A.
Mississippi voters had only congressional races to consider. As a result, where the state’s delegation was once comprised of three Democrats and one Republican, the opposite is now true. Two Democrats — both “Blue Dogs” — lost to Republicans. Apparently, their conservative voting patterns didn’t save them in the national congressional landslide for Republicans.
For example, Gene Taylor, a 10-term congressman from the Gulf Coast, voted against ObamaCare. Additionally, he claimed during his campaign that he wouldn’t vote for Nancy Pelosi as speaker of the House. You can’t get much more Blue Dog than that, yet Taylor was trumped by Republican Steven Palazzo.
Similarly, there’s Travis Childers from North Mississippi. Childers initially earned his seat via special election to replace a six-term Republican who had been appointed to Trent Lott’s (remember him?) vacant Senate seat. Childers was then reelected to the seat in 2008. Though he initially voted for health care reform, he was one of the “no” votes on final passage. Nonetheless, he was ousted by Republican Alan Nunnelee.
Peyton Irby is editor of Mississippi Employment Law Letter and chair of the Labor and Employment Group at Watkins Ludlam Winter & Stennis, P.A., in Jackson, Mississippi. He can be reached at (601) 949-4900.