Eller emerges victorious in Republican runoff in Mississippi, set to challenge Democratic Representative Thompson

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Ron Eller emerged victorious in the Republican primary runoff in Mississippi’s 2nd Congressional District. He will now go head-to-head with long-serving Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson in the upcoming general election on Nov. 5.

Eller, a military veteran and physician assistant, defeated Andrew Scott Smith, who has a background in farming and commercial real estate. The two candidates had previously secured the top spots in a three-person primary held on March 12.

Thompson has been representing the majority-Black district since his victory in a special election back in 1993. In the 2020 presidential election, President Joe Biden carried the district by a significant margin of 27 percentage points.

As the ranking Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee, Thompson was unopposed in securing his party’s nomination for the district this year. His platform includes goals such as reducing prescription drug costs, investing in historically Black colleges and universities, tackling student loan debt, and ensuring the wealthy contribute their fair share to build up the middle class.

Eller had previously run for the Republican nomination in the 2nd District in 2022, though unsuccessfully. He is a proponent of initiatives like the construction of a U.S.-Mexico border wall and the expansion of domestic energy production.

The 2nd District spans along the Mississippi River in the western part of the state, encompassing the flatlands of the Delta region and reaching into the capital city of Jackson.

In the 2020 presidential election, voters in the 2nd District favored Democrat Joe Biden over Republican Donald Trump, with a margin of 63% to 36%.

Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.

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