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Magnolia Mornings: February 29, 2024

Magnolia Mornings: February 29, 2024

By: Magnolia Tribune - February 29, 2024

Magnolia morning
  • Important state and national stories, market and business news, sports and entertainment, delivered in quick-hit fashion to start your day informed.

In Mississippi

1. National Guard grounds helicopter units following crashes

The Army National Guard has grounded all helicopter units after two recent helicopter crashes, allowing officials to review safety policies and procedures.

Two crashes involving the AH-64D Apache helicopters occurred in Utah on February 12 and Mississippi on February 23.

The incidents remain under investigation.

2. Biloxi baseball stadium receives competing naming rights bids

WLOX is reporting that two companies are bidding on the naming rights of the Biloxi baseball stadium which is the home of the minor league Shuckers.

The stadium is formerly known as MGM Park. According to WLOX, Keesler Federal Credit Union and the Shuckers both submitted bids, with KFCU bidding $150,000 per year for five years and the Shuckers offering $90,000 per year for ten years.

“Keesler Federal’s offer comes in at more than the contract that the City of Biloxi was hoping for — $125,000 per year for five years,” WLOX reported, adding, “MGM Resorts announced in September 2023 that it was giving up naming rights to allow the city to bring in additional revenue to help pay for the $35 million stadium.”

The city of Biloxi, which will decide between the two, is expected to make a decision in a matter of weeks.

National News & Foreign Policy

Donald Trump

On Wednesday, former President Donald Trump learned that he had been taken off of the ballot in Illinois in the state’s upcoming March 19th Republican Primary.

The move came after Cook County Circuit Judge Tracie Porter agreed with the filing by an organization challenging Trump’s legal status to run again for the presidency using the 14th Amendment. Free Speech For People tried a similar effort in three other states but failed.

The decision is on hold, allowing Trump time to appeal.

In other Trump legal news, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the former president’s appeal related to his claims of immunity in the election interference case being brought by the federal special counsel. That hearing is set for April.

The justices are also weighing whether states have the ability to ban Trump from the ballot using Section 3 of the 14 Amendment, a decision on which could come any day.

2. McConnell to step down as Senate Republican leader in November

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2024. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

The longest serving leader in the history of the U.S. Senate announced Wednesday that he would be stepping aside in November.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, also the longest serving Senator from Kentucky, will step down as the top Senate Republican after the General Election.

“One of life’s most underappreciated talents is to know when it’s time to move on to life’s next chapter,” said McConnell, now 82 years old.

McConnell said he intends to complete his term, which ends in January 2027, “from a different seat.” He was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1984.

Sports & Entertainment

1. Ole Miss, Southern Miss basketball lose mid-week matchups

(Photo from SouthernMissMBB on X)

Southern Miss lost in a heartbreaker in Mobile to South Alabama on Wednesday, falling to the Jags 73-70.

The Golden Eagles are now 16-14 overall and 9-8 in Sun Belt play.

Up in Oxford, Ole Miss didn’t fair any better in their mid-week contest versus Alabama, losing 103-88.

The Rebels are now 19-9 on the season and 6-9 in the SEC.

2. Mississippi Braves single-game tickets available Friday

Mississippi Braves single-game tickets for the 2024 season go on sale to the general public Friday, March 1 at 11:00 Am. Fans can purchase tickets to all 69 home games at via Ticketmaster, the TM app, or the Trustmark Park Box Office.

Fans are encouraged to buy tickets online and use the mobile ticketing option. By purchasing tickets in advance, fans guarantee their seat and save from the day-of-game price.

The Advanced ticket prices for all regular-season games in 2024:

  • Club Level – $27
  • Diamond Level – $17
  • Field Level – $12
  • GA/Reserved – $9
  • Grass Berm – $7

The 2024 season will be the last for the M-Braves in Mississippi. The team will be moving to Georgia beginning with the 2025 season.

Markets & Business

1. Stocks opening down ahead of latest inflation report

Markets Insider is reporting that stocks are set to open in the red on Thursday as investors await the latest economic data that could influence when the Federal Reserve makes its predicted first cut to interest rates this year.

“Futures linked to the S&P 500, Nasdaq 100 and Dow Jones Industrial Average were all down about 0.4%,” Insider reported, adding, “Wall Street was eagerly awaiting the latest release of the Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) Price Index to gauge whether inflation has continued to slow.”

2. Merger tied to Truth Social could give Trump windfall

According to the New York Post, former President Donald Trump could reap a windfall of as much as $4 billion from an upcoming merger tied to his social media company.

“Since Jan. 1, shares of Digital World Acquisition Corp, the ‘blank check’ firm created solely for the purpose of acquiring the parent company that runs Trump’s Truth Social platform, Trump Media & Technology Group, have surged by a whopping 161%,” NYP reported Wednesday. “Earlier this month, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved the pending merger, which could be worth as much as $10 billion. It is set to go to a shareholder vote on March 22.”

If the merger is approved, NYP reports that Trump’s stake could be valued at as much as $3.95 billion, according to filings showing that the former president would own around 79 million shares in the newly formed venture.

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Magnolia Tribune

This article was produced by Magnolia Tribune staff.