By Emily Le Coz/NEMS Daily Journal
REPUBLICAN CONGRESSIONAL PRIMARY
Estes touts regular guy credentials
Nunnelee an established Republican
TUPELO – Henry Ross is like that one college professor whose lectures brim with information you hope never appears on a test.
The Eupora attorney and deeply Christian congressional candidate rattles off historical facts in nearly every campaign stop he makes. He knows voting records, bill numbers, legal cases, Supreme Court decisions, constitutional amendments, dates, places, names and obscure details.
What’s more, the 55-year-old isn’t afraid to cram it all into a half-hour speech illustrating why America is broken and how he plans to fix it.
Ross believes in limited federal government, stronger states’ rights, radical spending cuts, lower corporate taxes, fewer regulations, less gun control and a return to the Christian values he says built this nation.
In fact, “faith” appears first among the seven issues Ross lists on his campaign website. It disputes separation of church and state, saying the Supreme Court took out of context the founding fathers’ intentions.
“America is a Christian nation,” he wrote, “contrary to what any president may say.”
A born-again Christian at age 29, Ross has spent his entire adult life practicing law and serving the public – or, at least, trying to serve it. The Eupora native has run for office several times but won only once: He was elected mayor of his hometown in 1997 and served one term.
He was beaten the second time by Pete Fortner, who had served the two terms prior to Ross and one term afterward. Fortner didn’t want to discuss Ross’ politics or why he ran against him.
“Henry is really a smart person,” Fortner said. “I’ve known him my entire life. My parents were friends with his parents. Of course, Eupora is a small town, everybody knows everybody.”
Other stints in the public sector came through political appointments. In 1993, then-Gov. Kirk Fordice tapped Ross to fill a vacant circuit judge seat. Ross lost the election for that job the next year. And in 2008, he was picked as senior counsel to the U.S. Attorney General in the Environmental and Natural Resources Division. That post ended along with the presidency of George W. Bush.
Ross also is a former U.S. Navy JAG Corps officer and U.S. Naval Reserve commander.
He’s married to the former Anne Booth, and the couple have three children: Henry, John and Catherine, one of whom recently graduated from college; the other two are currently attending.
Ross himself holds degrees in business and law from the University of Mississippi. He has a law practice and owns a now-vacant service station.
This is Ross’ second time running for Congress. He lost his bid two years ago in the Republican primary to Alan Nunnelee, who eventually won the race and now is serving his first term in the U.S. House.
But Ross never stopped fighting. He quietly observed Nunnelee’s congressional actions and made mental notes of his every vote and political utterance. Those deeds now fuel Ross’ second campaign, which blames the incumbent for his supposed failure to make tough decisions and save America from its slide into socialism.
“Alan’s a nice guy, but he’s also an established Republican who is going to do every single thing the Republican leadership in Washington tells him to do,” Ross said at his campaign kickoff event.
Ross said he’ll shake up Washington, hold lawmakers responsible for their actions and promote the conservative values he says north Mississippi holds dear.
No compromises, Ross promises, and no regrets.
and Nathan, and two grandchildren.