Deadline Day


Candidates running in state and local races filed qualifying papers — some at the eleventh hour — before Friday's 5 p.m. deadline.

The qualifying deadline on Friday is for candidates wishing to run in the Aug. 4 Republican and Democratic party primaries.

If needed, run-off elections are set for Aug. 25.

The general election is slated for Nov. 3.

The field of candidates, both at the state and local level, features some new faces and political veterans.

At least two candidates previously running for DeSoto County positions have dropped out.

John Arnold who had previously qualified as a Republican candidate to run for Chancery Clerk, has dropped out of that race as has Don Daniels, also a Republican, who had qualified to run for the District 3 Justice Court Judge post but has since withdrawn.

In the hotly-contested DeSoto County Superintendent of Education race, DeSoto Central High School Principal Cory Uselton has added his name to the list of candidates running for that position, which includes longtime DeSoto County educators Jerry Darnell, Jim Ferguson and Dr. Edith Allen Robinson.

In the race for DeSoto County Sheriff, two-term incumbent DeSoto County Sheriff Bill Rasco has drawn two opponents, Hernando Police Officer Russell Lynch and James Weifenbach, a Southaven resident and cabinetmaker.

In the Chancery Clerk's race, Jeff Fitch, Misty Taylor Heffner and Ray Laughter have qualified. They are seeking to replace longtime Chancery Clerk W.E. "Sluggo" Davis, who is not seeking re-election.

Longtime DeSoto County Circuit Clerk Dale Kelly Thompson has no opposition and neither does longtime Coroner Jeff Pounders, Tax Assessor Parker Pickle, Tax Collector Joey Treadway or County Attorney Craig Treadway.

In the Constable District 1 race, Michael "Butch" Anderson is running as a Democrat for that post. Incumbent District 1 Constable Liz Medlin and Lawrence W. Vaughn, Jr. are running as Republicans.

In the Constable District 2 race, Bryant L. Bobo and Joshua Wilson, both Republicans, will square off.

In the Constable District 3 race, Keith Combes, Brandon "Bubba" Hylander and James Ripley, all Republicans, will face each other.

In the Constable District 5 race, Rodger D. Clark, an Independent, will face Republicans Carl Glass, Lee Hodge and Thomas Jones.

In the District 1 Supervisor's race, Ernest H. "Ernie" Jones, a Republican, will face fellow Republican and incumbent Jessie L. Medlin.

In the District 2 Supervisor race, incumbent Mark Gardner, a Republican, will face Libertarian Ken Mills.

In the District 3 Supervisor's election, Bobby G. Reed, a Republican candidate will face fellow Republican incumbent Bill Russell.

In the District 4 Supervisor's race, Lee Perkins Caldwell, the incumbent, has no opposition.

The District 5 Supervisor's race has drawn a crowded field to succeed the late District 5 Supervisor Harvey Wayne Lee who died in October in an all-terrain vehicle accident, including Lee's brother Michael, and Barry Barton, Murry Haslip, Milton W. Jones, Jerry Oliver, Hugh M. Sinquefield and Randal L. "Randy" Williams, all Republicans.

In the Justice Court Judge District 1 race, Ken Adams, a Republican, has no opposition.

In the Justice Court Judge District 2 race, incumbent Larry Vaughn, a Republican, faces a challenge from fellow Republicans Steve Dodd, a DeSoto County School Board member, Chris Plumlee and Jerry Owensby.

In the District 3 Justice Court Judge race, incumbent Billy Lantrip will face fellow Republican Charlie Hoots and James "Jim" Holland.

Incumbent District 4 Justice Court Judge Brad Russell, a Republican, has no opposition.

In the Justice Court Judge District 5 race, incumbent Karen Sanders Carter, a Republican faces a challenge from Walter Hopper, a FedEx driver, and Brian Keller, a DeSoto County Sheriff's Department Captain.

Kevin Blackwell, chairman of the DeSoto County Republican Party, said regardless of party affiliation, those candidates running are making a noble public sacrifice.

"You have to applaud every candidate that steps out there and offers themselves for public service," Blackwell said.

Robert Lee Long is Community Editor for the DeSoto Times-Tribune. He may be contacted at or at 662-429-6397, Ext. 252

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