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JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Mississippi lawmakers gaveled to order at noon Tuesday, starting a three-month session that’s expected to focus largely on education.

This is the second year of a four-year term. And, for now, there are some vacancies in the Legislature.

House Speaker Philip Gunn announced at the opening of the session that Rep. David Gibbs, a Democrat from West Point, had resigned immediately because of poor health. The governor will be required to schedule a special election.

“I am saddened by Rep. Gibbs’ resignation today,” said Speaker Gunn. “He has served his district well for 21 years. We will continue to pray for him. We wish him and his family well.”

A special election is being held Tuesday in House District 59 in northern Rankin County. Second-term Republican Kevin McGee resigned in November to settle a state ethics case.

Two Senate seats are open because Democrats Bennie Turner of West Point and Alice Harden of Jackson died late last year.


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