‘It’s just time’: Longtime Hinds County Republican Party chairman resigns

Hinds County Republican Chair Pete Perry
Hinds County Republican Chair Pete Perry(WLBT)
Published: Sep. 7, 2022 at 5:36 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Pete Perry, the long-serving chairman of Hinds County’s Republican Party, has stepped down.

“I’ve been in too long,” he said. “It’s just time.”

Perry has served in the position since 2004. He served in the same position in Neshoba County years ago.

“It’s not like I’m retiring. I’m still going to be on the [executive] committee,” he said. “I’m still going to be involved.”

Perry announced his resignation at a party meeting in July. The executive committee tapped Jackson attorney Spencer Ritchie to take his place. For his part, Ritchie will remain in the position at least until a new executive committee is elected in 2024.

“The county committee elects the chairman. So, the normal process is every four years, you have precinct caucuses and county conventions. The county convention elects the executive committee, the committee elects the chairman,” Perry said.

Perry planned to step down in 2021 but delayed that decision because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Party chairs preside over party primaries and are responsible for hiring poll workers, training poll workers, and the like.

In 2016, more than 18,000 Republicans cast ballots in the hotly contested primary that featured then-candidates Donald Trump, Sen. Ted Cruz, and Gov. John Kasich. In November 2020, approximately 25,000 people in the county, about a quarter of those who cast ballots, voted to re-elect Donald Trump.

“Clearly, we’re not in the same role as a lot of counties in recruiting candidates, because running as a Republican in Hinds County is not necessarily the wisest way to go about it,” he said. “While we are not the majority party in Hinds County, we bring in as many [if not more] votes in statewide races as any other county.”

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