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Polls open 12 hours Tuesday in Miss. for runoffs

 

EMILY WAGSTER PETTUS,Associated Press

 

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) -- Mississippi precincts are open 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday for Democratic and Republican primary runoffs. 

 

 

 

Most nominees were decided three weeks ago, and each party has only one statewide race on Tuesday''s ballot. Democrats are choosing a nominee for governor, and Republicans are choosing one for state treasurer. 

 

 

 

Both parties have runoffs for several legislative and county-level races. Winners advance to the Nov. 8 general election. 

 

 

 

Hattiesburg Mayor Johnny DuPree and Clarksdale attorney and developer Bill Luckett are in the Democratic runoff for governor, and the winner faces Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant of Brandon, and others, in November. 

 

 

 

State Personnel Board director Lynn Fitch of Madison and state Sen. Lee Yancey of Brandon are in the Republican runoff for treasurer. The winner faces Ocean Springs Mayor Connie Moran, a Democrat. 

 

 

 

People who voted in one party''s primary on Aug. 2 are not allowed to cross over and vote in the other party''s runoff Tuesday. Those who didn''t vote at all on Aug. 2 may cast a ballot in either runoff. Mississippi does not register voters by party. 

 

 

 

DuPree led the four-man Aug. 2 primary with about 43 percent of the vote, running strong in south Mississippi. Luckett had about 39 percent and was strong in the north. 

 

 

 

DuPree, 57, said he spent the weekend campaigning in the Delta, in north Mississippi''s Marshall County and in central Mississippi''s Hinds County. His message? 

 

 

 

"Go vote," DuPree said Monday in a phone interview from Hattiesburg. "I say this routinely to everybody. Gosh, I''d love for everybody to go out and vote for me. I''m as concerned about them voting for me as I am about them voting, period. That''s the American way. The people you select will be the people who represent your community." 

 

 

 

Luckett, 63, said Monday from Ripley that he has been campaigning 16 hours a day over the past eight days, making appearances across northern Mississippi. 

 

 

 

"We are strong up this way," Luckett said. "I''m new at the business of politics and I listen to my consultants. They tell me the runoff is more about getting the vote out than it is just generally campaigning." 

 

 

 

Bryant, of Brandon, captured the Republican nomination for governor by winning 59 percent in a five-man primary. Independent Will Oatis of Silver Creek also will be on the general election ballot for governor. Two rival factions of the Reform Party want to put a candidate in the race, but the state Board of Election Commissioners hasn''t yet decided which faction -- if either -- can put someone on the ballot. 

 

 

 

Fitch, 49, of Madison and Yancey, 43, emerged from a three-person primary. Fitch led the Aug. 2 primary with almost 38 percent. Yancey had about 33 percent. 

 

 

 

Moran was unopposed for the Democratic nomination. One Reform Party group wants to put a candidate in the treasurer''s race, but that''s also unresolved. 

 

 

 

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.

 

 

 

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