By NEMS Daily Journal
The suspense ends today in Mississippi’s 1st District congressional race, but that doesn’t mean the area’s voters are through for the year.
U.S. Rep. Travis Childers, a Democrat from Booneville who is seeking his second full term, faces Republican state Sen. Alan Nunnelee is what many observers see as a toss-up. Seven minor-party and independent candidates also will be on the ballot.
The 1st District matchup has generated the most interest in the area and is one reason for the strong absentee voting. But it’s not the only race on today’s ballot.
Across Northeast Mississippi, voters will choose judges and school board members.
In addition, Lafayette County will elect a coroner, Calhoun County a county attorney, Lee County a constable and Prentiss County a superintendent of education. Tippah County residents also will vote on whether to recombine the tax assessor and collector offices.
The congressional outcome will be decided today because only a plurality is required to win. Other contests, however, require a majority of the votes cast, so runoffs are possible in races with more than two candidates. Those runoffs would be Nov. 23.
All four of Mississippi’s U.S. House members face challenges today. Incumbent Democrat Gene Taylor, who like Childers is a member of the conservative Blue Dog coalition, is in a tight race with Republican Steven Palazzo for the 4th District seat.
Bennie Thompson of District 2 and Gregg Harper of District 3 are expected to win handily.
• Candidate list, precincts, Page 10A