It has been barely a week in the campaign for Mississippi Lt. Governor and the state’s media has already jumped in to carry water for incumbent Delbert Hosemann. They have written attack pieces against Hosemann’s opponent, Senator Chris McDaniel, and columns defending the incumbent’s less-than stellar record in office. But this early series of attacks is not a sign of strength from Hosemann; it is a sign of weakness and fear.
The latest comes from columnist Sid Salter, a liberal Democrat. Salter makes the claim that the McDaniel political playbook “is nothing if not predictable. His opponent is ‘not conservative enough’ and fails McDaniel’s political purity test.” That’s because it’s true: Delbert Hosemann is not conservative and never has been. In fact, Salter has defended Hosemann every step of the way, going back to his days as Secretary of State. He carries the hose for Hosemann as his champion protector.
Case in point: In 2009, Hosemann, as Secretary of State, crafted a plan for Voter ID, a popular issue with Republicans, to be sure. But his bill was essentially an early voting bill, with an unconstitutional Voter ID plan. Several conservative Senators, including Chris McDaniel, killed the bill and were attacked for the lie of not wanting Voter ID. But a better bill was later passed with McDaniel’s help. Yet Salter was one of Hosemann’s key supporters.
Hosemann and his defenders, like Salter, constantly use the word “conservative” in describing his political philosophy, as most RINOs do. This is nothing more than politics. They are not conservatives but use the word to get elected.
McDaniel is a true conservative. He talks the talk and walks the walk. He has fought efforts to strengthen government at the expense of Mississippi’s citizens. He had defeated tax hikes and legislative pay raises, as well as bills that violate the liberties of the people. In the State Senate, McDaniel has fought to abolish the state income tax, to enact term limits, and protect freedoms, including gun rights. He is 100 percent pro-life and has even drawn up plans for the state to nullify federal laws designed to curtail God-given freedoms.
Has Delbert Hosemann raised his voice in defense of these central tenants of conservatism? Hardly. Though Salter tries to convince us that the “‘not conservative enough’ bilge doesn’t hold water,” Hosemann blocked an effort to abolish the state income tax, fought to expand Medicaid (which now consumes 30 percent of the state’s budget), tried to give every legislator, and himself, a major pay increase, and repeatedly blocked a religious exemption for vaccines mandates (which he did again just days ago).
Hosemann was once a Democrat, who endorsed and contributed to Ray Mabus for Governor, rather than Republican Kirk Fordice, who was instrumental in beginning the long process of turning the state of Mississippi around after years of Democratic messes. But Salter won’t tell you any of that. Hosemann switched parties for political expediency, as Mississippi was turning Republican, and not because of ideology. How can we know this? He’s never shed his liberal bona fides, most likely gained in his education at Notre Dame and New York University.
“Hosemann’s honest efforts to listen across the political aisle and seek consensus over conflict when possible should be lauded, not criticized,” Salter writes. Yet he conveniently leaves out the fact that Hosemann re-districted one of the Senate’s most conservative members, Melanie Sojourner, out of her seat and last year was rumored to be on the hunt for an opponent to challenge McDaniel in District 42.
As Lt. Governor, Hosemann repeatedly killed conservative bills by McDaniel and other conservative Senators. But true conservatives don’t make war on other conservatives. Delbert Hosemann has because he is not a conservative. His efforts to reach across the aisle has benefited Democrats, not Republicans.
As “woke” culture continues to dominate our institutions of higher learning, Chris McDaniel has vowed to end it; Delbert Hosemann has not. And he will not. Just like he did not stand up for the right of Mississippi voters to choose a new state flag. Like electricity, he chooses the path of least resistance.
Chris McDaniel has stood in the gap against forces arrayed against the people and taken major abuse in doing so. Sure, McDaniel could have gone along to get along, waited his turn, and moved into higher offices. But he chose to fight for the conservative values that he truly believes in. He has conducted himself as a statesman, not a politician.
Salter contends that Hosemann is a good political street fighter with a large war chest, who will take the fight to McDaniel. Yet Hosemann has never taken on a big fight. Never. And none of his defenders, including Salter, can name a major controversial issue he has stood for. McDaniel, though, is a seasoned political fighter and has taken the best shots the powers-that-be can throw, yet keeps on fighting.
To be a true conservative one must have the pedigree to back it up. Words are meaningless without corresponding action. There is only one candidate for Lt. Governor who has the resume of a proven fighter for the conservative cause, with the political scars to prove it. And then there’s Delbert Hosemann, who rode to elective success with a cute political ad yet has repeatedly pushed a liberal agenda at the expense of conservatism. Sid Salter knows it. And that’s why he defends him.
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