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Reps. Mark Baker and Philip Gunn help...

Reps. Mark Baker and Philip Gunn help MS Republican House members make a stand

By: Magnolia Tribune - February 4, 2009

Tough going for minority party in the MS House of Representatives

“We are demanding and requesting that all members of the House be given the opportunity to be heard on these important pieces of legislation,” said Rep. Mark Baker, (R) Brandon.

But without the support of democrat led committees, republican issues usually have no chance of seeing the light of day.

“Our people want us up here dealing with issues and we’re up hear dealing with issues, we’re trying to get the issues on the floor,” said Rep. Phillip Gunn, (R) Clinton.

And one by one, four bills were asked to be withdrawn out of committee. Then democrats tabled the motion.

“Don’t you agree it’s better to go by the committee system who have researched and thoroughly discussed,” said Rep. Bennett Malone, (D) Carthage.

Sometimes emotions spilled over.

“You and others for some God unknown reason decide you’d rather bring it out here and make a show out of it instead of looking out for the welfare of the people you claim you want to look out for,” said Rep. Edward Blackmon, (D) Canton.

“Gentleman this is not a show sir, if you’d brought this bill out it’s been voted on the floor of this house. It passed last year,” said Rep. Alex Monsour, Jr. (R) Vicksburg.

House majority leader Tyrone Ellis calls the move a cardinal sin.

“Anytime you try to circumvent the process you are going behind the leader’s back and the speaker’s back,” said Ellis.

Representative Mark Baker says they won’t stop trying to let their voices be heard.

“Sometimes it’s like beating your head against the wall, but sooner or later you’re gonna break down the wall,” said Baker.


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Magnolia Tribune

This article was produced by Magnolia Tribune staff.