District 3 U.S. House Runoff: ‘It’s gonna be a very competitive run off and it’s a sprint’

Published: Jun. 8, 2022 at 8:31 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) -Some Mississippians are bracing for more campaigning, ads and mailers the Republican primary is going to a runoff in the third congressional district race. Michael Cassidy and Michael Guest both received about 47 percent of the vote.

Experience is a dividing point in the race and something that both candidates are trying to play to their favor. Michael Guest as the incumbent says he’s got a record to run on. Michael Cassidy says he thinks the voters like that he doesn’t have political experience.

Just less than 300 votes separated Michael Cassidy and Michael Guest...forcing a runoff. We asked Republican strategist Henry Barbour about it.

“It certainly surprised people,” said Barbour. “It always surprises people when an incumbent doesn’t win. But I think it shows you where the electorate is, or you know, ever looking for change. And it’s gonna be a very competitive run off and it’s a sprint. It’s a three weeks sprint.”

Cassidy doesn’t have a political background but hopes some newfound name recognition could help him.

“We are going to bat even harder,” added Cassidy. “And that’s really our strategy is to keep doing what we’ve been doing, but and keep the intensity up all the way. Mr. Guest, he’s only been up there about three and a half years. And the the votes that he’s casted are, quite frankly, they’re indisputably not conservative.”

Strategy from the Michael Guest campaign is going to shift now.

“We’ve got to set the record straight,” said Guest. “You know, we’ve allowed these attacks to go on now for weeks, we’ve not answered the attacks. And people have begun to believe this information, because we’ve not fought back. And so now is the time for us, again, to talk about who we are, what we’ve done for the state.”

The attacks have mostly been focused on two points.

“So many people just don’t know about Mr. Guest’s record,” noted Cassidy. “They don’t know about him voting for January 6 commission. They don’t know about him voting for these big omnibus bills that have funded Planned Parenthood that has given money to the over a billion dollars to the nation’s largest abortion provider.”

Guest confirms he voted for the commission but doesn’t support it as it currently exists.

“Their report would have had to been concluded by the end of last year, not no subpoenas could be issued, nothing could be put in the report without Democrats and Republican appointees agree,” Guest explained. “And that’s not what we have now.”

And he points to his endorsements by pro-life groups as proof that he doesn’t support planned parenthood.

“It is not over,” added Henry Barbour. “Both sides can win. And it is gonna be a dash of three weeks.”

Cassidy is running as an “America First” candidate, aligning himself with former President Trump and members of congress like Rand Paul. Guest noting Wednesday that he voted with the former president 95% of the time he was in office.

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