JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Apart from the races going to a runoff, the primary elections are over. Michael Watson, Republican Secretary of State candidate, won his race and is advancing to the general election in November. He has proposed moving the state driver license program under the Secretary of State’s purview.
As we have discussed many times, the current model is broken and dysfunctional. Something needs to change. The responsibilities currently fall under the Department of Public Safety, however, if they were not responsible for licensing, the department could focus exclusively on the Mississippi Highway Patrol, the state Crime Lab and other areas of responsibility that directly impact public safety.
Issuing driver licenses is more of an administrative responsibility, like many of the other areas of oversight in the Secretary of State’s office. Over the years, Delbert Hosemann has done an impressive job of creating efficient and effective systems to manage the myriad of items that fall under his office. The same can also happen for driver licenses.
In fact, according to Watson, three other states already have driver license services under the Secretary of State’s office, so we would not be reinventing the wheel… it is already proven to work.
Whether Watson wins or Democratic challenge Johnny Dupree fills the seat, putting the Mississippi Driver License program under the Secretary of State office deserves strong consideration.