State Treasurer Tate Reeves made one final push through Jones County Friday in his attempt to become the next Lt. Governor.
Reeves attended a meet-and-greet event at The Loft on Central Avenue Friday afternoon as part of his "Watchdog Express Tour," which began at the Neshoba County Fair. Prior to the event, Reeves sat down with the Laurel Leader-Call.
"We've visited Starkville, Columbus, West Point, Corinth, Tupelo, Oxford, Olive Branch, Southaven, Vicksburg and now Laurel," he said. "This is one last chance to tell people why I'm running for Lt. Governor.
"We need to attract better and higher paying jobs to Mississippi, reduce the debt burden and get spending under control," Reeves added. "We're working hard over the next 72 hours to gather our supporters and get them to the polls on Tuesday."
The Lt. Governor's race between Reeves and fellow Republican Senate President Pro Tempore Billy Hewes (R-Gulfport) has gained statewide attention with advertising sometimes crossing the line into "dirty politics."
Reeves said it was "unfortunate" that his opponent resorted to attack ads in the Hattiesburg-Laurel TV market before he was ever on TV in the northern part of the state.
"Elee (Reeves' wife) and I have traveled all over Mississippi telling people why I ought to be elected, not why someone ought not to be," he said.
Reeves said Hewes' claims were also not accurate including Reeves' alleged mismanagement of College Savings Plan funds. The treasurer said "Consumer Reports" has ranked the plan among the five best in America.
"What's important to Mississippi is job growth, job creation, getting our debt burden and spending under control," he said.
Reeves said he's kept a close eye on the debt ceiling debate in Washington, D.C. The House and Senate have proposed opposing bills to raise the country's debt ceiling with a looming deadline of Aug. 1.
Reeves said it was unfortunate that the President is trying to get a tax increase passed in the current climate.
"We're in tough economic times," he said. "The last thing Americans in general, and Mississippians in particular need is higher taxes.
"The President's administration has spent trillions more over the last several years than has been taken in," Reeves added. "The U.S. must get spending under control. No time is better than now to do it."
Reeves said he hopes political leaders find a solution that's "fair for the taxpayers and best for the economy."
Reeves called Wednesday's announcement that GE Aviation is expanding into the area "encouraging news for Ellisville, Jones County and all of Mississippi."
Gov. Haley Barbour announced this week that GE Aviation, a world-leading producer of commercial and military jet engines and components, integrated digital, electrical power and mechanical systems for aircraft, will be building a 300,000-square-foot facility in Ellisville. The $56 million investment project will bring 250 jobs once the facility is fully operational. The company plans to be up and running by early 2013.
"This is a major employer and major manufacturer," he said. "To have them expanding in Mississippi is phenomenal."
Reeves again thanked his local supporters for everything they've done including making phone calls and knocking on doors.
"This is a major broad-based grassroots campaign based upon the issues," he said. "It wouldn't be possible without the many volunteers to help me get elected Lt. Governor."
Primary elections are set for Tuesday. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The deadline for absentee voting is today with the Jones County Circuit Clerk's Office open from 8 a.m. until noon.