Trump believes in Reeves, but I don’t think I do

By JAMES PHILLIPS,

If you read this column with any regularity, you know there are few political issues on which I disagree with President Trump. However, the president’s endorsement of Tate Reeves for governor is one decision I cannot agree with, but due to the lack of a better choice I might have to follow his lead.

The public perception is that Reeves is a conservative that is very respected, family oriented and has chosen to dedicate his life to public service. The last descriptor is the exact persona that Reeves most obviously portrays in my opinion.

It’s one thing for someone to dedicate their lives to public service, but the ultimate question is who are they dedicated to serving, the people or themselves?  

To be completely fair, I feel like the Democratic candidate for governor would be a disaster if he was elected to lead Mississippi. I believe Hood and Reeves are two of the weakest candidates to ever run for the Mississippi Governor’s Mansion.

I’m a conservative and registered Republican, but I have never been a “straight ticket” voter. Now, I’m very aware of the key issues that separate the political parties, and I always take many of those issues into account when considering any political candidate. But for me, it’s all about the individual behind the candidate.

Truth be told, I’m very simplistic when it comes to politics. I’m a God loving, United States loving common sense conservative who believes in traditional morals and values. I will never be politically correct or “woke,” and I will always call them just like I see them.

In past elections, when the election choices were between weak people who made weak candidates, I exercised my “write-in” liberties. I did that numerous times over the years without giving it a second thought.

Past candidates, regardless of party affiliation, at least believed in this country and were proud to be an American. Politicians who didn’t believe that had to live a lie if they wanted to be an elected official.

Unfortunately, those days are gone, and electing the wrong person to a powerful office could have dire consequences. So, with the election just six days away, I find myself in quite the quandary. Do I listen to President Trump and vote for a candidate I would normally never vote for? Do I go with my gut and refuse to support a man I perceive as entitled, elitist and motivated by the power that comes with the office rather than the people that put him there?

Under normal circumstances this would be a no brainer, but the current circumstances are far, far from normal.

Reeves has the pedigree, experience, the money, the right supporters, and all of his rehearsed remarks and answers check the proverbial conservative boxes. Heck, in Trump, he even has the political pied-piper backing him. But even with all that said, I neither believe in, nor trust Tate Reeves, and I cannot pinpoint why.

I had two in-person encounters with the lieutenant governor. Both instances were brief, but both only strengthened the negative feelings I have always held for Reeves the candidate. Again, I ask myself: Who’s the alternative? And what happens if his opponent wins?

Is it finally time to go against my intuition and vote like a party-man? I can easily make the excuse that voting for the party is more important than voting for the candidate with everything currently going on in our country.

President Trump took a long time to publicly endorse Reeves for governor. I like to think he had some of the same reservations I’m struggling with now.

I know the elections over the next few years are going to be some of the most crucial in our country’s history. The Democrat Party is hellbent on defeating and destroying President Trump using any means possible. Even if that means destroying this country, they do not care.

Now, more than ever, we need the strongest conservative leaders and candidates possible. We need politicians that will selflessly serve and protect us and our country. I may be proven wrong, but I do not believe Tate Reeves is that kind of leader, but do I really have a choice?