Hattiesburg American - Pierce Unseats Diaz on Court
Judge Randy "Bubba" Pierce's win of the Southern District seat on the Mississippi Supreme Court has humbled him.
With 98 percent of the precincts reporting, the Leakesville native defeated Supreme Court Justice Oliver Diaz Jr. Tuesday by securing 58 percent of the votes.
"We were blessed," Pierce said about his victory moments after the race was decided.
"I had a lot of volunteers in the Pine Belt (and) we've worked very hard."
Diaz did not return calls Tuesday night to comment, but Pierce said his opponent did call him to concede.
"He just called and said congratulations and ... to do the right thing," Pierce said.
"I said that's what I'm planning to do."
The race between Pierce and Diaz received a bevy of media attention after provocative television ads from an third party group slammed Diaz's voting record during his tenure in the Supreme Court.
The ads were condemned by the Special Committee on Judicial Election Campaign Intervention, which said the ad violated the Code of Judicial Conduct.
Several television stations then pulled the ads.
Pierce was criticized for not denouncing the ads.
"The only thing I can control is me and my campaign," he said.
"Everything we did with my campaign was positive. All of our commercials were positive and I'm proud of that."
Pierce said the first thing on his agenda today will be his duties as the Chancery Court judge for Greene, George and Jackson counties.
"Then we'll start working on a transition," he said.