I’m running for governor to move working families to the center of what matters. I will put working families first. It’s not about party. It’s not about partisanship. People are sick of the partisan bickering and finger pointing in state politics—it’s about getting things done!
We can make our state government more open and honest, cut government waste, cut taxes for working folks, and set the right priorities to build a better Mississippi.
It’s about having a state government that is diverse—that reflects all parts of Mississippi. Where gubernatorial appointments are made on the basis of merit—not political connections—and won’t be horse-traded or discussed during the campaign.
My “Pledge to Mississippi Families” sets forth my top priorities if I am elected governor. This is not a Democratic agenda or a Republican agenda. It’s not a city agenda or a rural agenda. It’s a working families agenda.
It comes down to this – in everything I’ve done as attorney general, I’ve put Mississippi working families first.
Working together, we can move our state forward and put the hardworking people of Mississippi first.
TO IMPROVE EDUCATION
Education is the building block to success. Investing in Mississippi’s public education system means investing in every Mississippian.
- We can do more to provide pre-K for kids across Mississippi—not immediately, but over a 4-year period, as we open up the budget, as we cut waste, as we do away with all the giveaways and insider deals. We will find the money for pre-K and we can do that without more taxes on working people.
- Our teachers deserve reasonable pay. For too long Mississippi teachers have been paid too little—far less than surrounding states. Let’s figure out a way to raise teacher pay to attract and retain the best teachers for our children.
- We need to make college more affordable—especially community college. Eight counties in North Mississippi have banded together to make community college tuition free. If they can do it in North Mississippi, let’s encourage other parts of the state to do the same.
TO MAKE HEALTH CARE AFFORDABLE & ACCESSIBLE
Jesus said to take care of the widows, orphans, the elderly, and the least among us. When it comes to health care, Mississippi has not followed His word.
I grew up in a rural community with a rural hospital that saved lives. The emergency room is now closed. Now a working guy with a heart attack or a kid with a bad asthma attack or a mom with a pregnancy complication has to get in a car or a bus to travel miles and miles to get needed care to survive. That is turning our back on rural Mississippians and I will not do that.
As your governor we will:
- Focus on improving rural access to health care and keeping rural hospitals and emergency rooms open
- Expand Medicaid to cover over 300,000 Mississippians—many working families –who cannot afford health insurance
- Accept over $1 billion per year in federal support to pay for keeping rural hospitals open and providing healthcare to over 300,000 Mississippians, which will also create over 8,000 jobs in the healthcare industry and pump dollars into rural communities.
- Support law enforcement in the fight against the opioid epidemic.
TO CLEAN UP STATE GOVERNMENT AND CUT WASTE
- Open up state government and put a stop to shady backroom deals. For too long our legislative leaders have run the state like a casino for special interests – collecting chips, handing out favors.
- So as governor, my first act will be to open it up. An honest and transparent government. A government for you, not the special interests.
- We will propose a series of reforms. But here are two first steps.
- Require all state legislators and state officials to allow the public to have access to all of their email and other correspondence under the Mississippi Public Records Act.
- Legislators should not be able to take campaign contributions while the Legislature is in session.
- As attorney general, my staff and I recovered more than $3 billion in fines and penalties that came back to Mississippi—back to taxpayers—back to those that were ripped off. I know what it takes to make money for Mississippi—not give it away!
- I’m going to take a prosecutor mentality to state government and go after every instance of the taxpayers getting ripped off. Every special insider deal. Every wasteful giveaway. Every time tax dollars are used to scratch someone’s back, I’m going to be on it like a hawk. And the money we recover goes right back to the working people. That’s what I’ve done my entire career. I believe that’s the type of change we need in state government.
- The point of this is to save your tax dollars so that the money is spent on you, for you, for pre-k, for roads, for health care, and for tax relief.
TO PROVIDE TAX RELIEF FOR WORKING FAMILIES
- We need to provide tax relief for families by rolling back the sales tax on food. It’s hard for families to make ends meet. Let’s make it easier to put food on the table for the hard working people of Mississippi by cutting the grocery tax.
- The Lt. Governor proposed, and the Legislature approved, a massive $210M/yr. tax giveaway to big out of state corporations—many of whom are campaign contributors. Hundreds of millions of tax dollars every year that should have gone to fixing our roads, improving our schools, or giving tax relief to Mississippi businesses and working people.
- We need a claw back provision in state law that says if an out of state corporation gets a tax break for promising to create jobs—they lose their tax breaks if they don’t create those jobs. It’s time to end tax giveaways to corporations who break their promise to Mississippi taxpayers.
TO GROW OUR ECONOMY
Mississippi needs to get back to swinging hammers and building things—that’s how we grow our economy and build stronger communities. Since 2009, Mississippi’s real economic growth has been anemic, while our neighbors’ economies are expanding far more.
As your governor we will:
- Fix our roads and bridges. I’ll put a process in place so the roads that are built and bridges that are fixed are done based on need, not the whim of a special interest buying access or elected officials getting roads built for their personal convenience.
- Expand job training and apprenticeship programs at our community colleges and technical schools. To attract new businesses to Mississippi, we need a well-trained work force.
- Support Mississippi small businesses and main street merchants by putting money in Mississippi hands not out-of-state corporations.
- Work with state and local economic development agencies to attract jobs and new businesses to Mississippi.
A Record of Accomplishments
Elected as Attorney General in 2003, Jim Hood has an unrivaled record of success:
- Passionate champion of children. General Hood has worked tirelessly to prevent children from being abused and exploited, especially by internet predators. His efforts have served as a model for other states.
- Dedicated public servant. General Hood has served the people for 25 years as an assistant attorney general, district attorney, and attorney general.
- Friend of consumers. After Hurricane Katrina, General Hood worked to strengthen laws to protect consumers, while prosecuting offenders for home repair fraud, price gouging, identity theft, and financial scams.
- Watchdog over corporate wrong-doers. General Hood’s commitment to holding corporations accountable has recovered more than $3 billion for taxpayers.
- Guardian of the Gulf Coast. General Hood worked to provide relief to coastal residents and business owners after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.