2022 The Year the Republican Party Platform Died in Mississippi
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Chairman Steve Hopkins
Mississippi Freedom Caucus
Jackson, MS (February 14, 2022) — If you’ve gone looking for the MS GOP party platform lately, you’ll have to do some digging to find it. The platform was removed from the Republican Party’s website, although the historic framework can still be found empty on the webpage, and if you dig far enough using an internet archive system such as “Wayback Machine,” you can pull the now archived party platform. The platform was last adopted May 14, 2016, and at the time the Party “fundamentally believe[d] in the conservative principles of individual freedom, personal responsibility, free market economic policies, and a society that respects our God given rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” One of the main tenets of the platform included “Integrity in Elections” which stated, “the integrity of our election process should be vigilantly protected and improved by our government” and that “we support efforts to restore and maintain the integrity of our voter registration rolls.”
Those points were mainstays of the Republican Party and of conservatives everywhere, but they are slowly losing ground in MS. The MS GOP has pulled the platform from their website and Leaders in the State House of Representatives appear to side with the minority party of Democrats when it comes to election integrity. As an article late last week in the Clarion Ledger headlined, “House Democrats get rare win as divided Republicans approve diminished election bill.”
Why may you ask, should the Democrats get a win on a topic that is the cornerstone of our Republic, in stripping an election integrity bill down to almost nothing, when the Democrats only represent a paltry 40% of the chamber? It certainly wasn’t only the Democrats at the helm of steering this sinking ship. The strike-all amendment that did the dirty deed of making a once decent bill into something weak and lackluster, was presented by a Republican. Moments after the strike-all bill was introduced, a Democrat introduced an amendment that would make it even harder to purge voter rolls. This all transpired under the careful guise of the Republican House Leadership. The Democrat House Minority Leader Robert Johnson indicated after the vote, that the Republicans have been more willing to compromise this session than in the past. Why are Republicans compromising? Republicans make up a super-majority in both legislative chambers and yet what do we have to show for it?
The Mississippi Freedom Caucus (MFC) members in the meantime are called “far-right,” “hyper-conservative,” and “super-conservative” in the same Clarion Ledger article. Is the MFC hyper-conservative for following what was a tenet of the Republican Party just a year ago? Maybe we are, or maybe the Republican Leaders in the MS House of Representatives are letting the party platform go to the wayside and are aligning with the Democrats more than members of their own party.
Now the “election integrity” bill is on its way to the MS State Senate, where we can only hope that the true conservatives on that side of the building can prove to the rest of us in Mississippi that the tenants of the old GOP aren’t yet dead. If not, 2022 may indeed be marked as the year that the Republican Party platform died in Mississippi.